Shrinking public sector employment outdone by private sector jobs growth

commuters B&W-2The proportion of jobs in the public sector is shrinking, driven by government cuts under its austerity plans but more largely by the growth in private sector employment.

744,000 people living in London work in the public sector, which includes the NHS, education, central government, local authorities, public bodies, the police and the armed forces. That is 15.3% of the workforce and one of the lowest rates in Britain. The average for England is 16.8% with rates much higher in the North East and in Wales and Scotland.

public sector jobs regional

Since 2010 there has been an 8% decline in public sector jobs. Under government plans heath and education budgets are protected so the cuts have fallen elsewhere. Some of the reduction may be attribute to reclassification. At the end of 2013 Royal Mail was privatized and in early 2014 the Lloyds Banking Group, that had been bailed out by the government and taken in to the public sector, was reclassified as private as the government sold down its share.

During the same period there has been rise of in private sector job, pushing up the proportion of private sector workers from 81% to 85% of the workforce.

This split however is not uniform across London. 27% of the employment in Greenwich is in the public sector. That’s the highest rate of any region in the UK, and neighbouring Lewisham and Newham are not that far behind. At the other extreme, there are just 3% of people in the City working in the public sector.

public sector jobs map

Government pressure to reduce the size of the public sector is likely to lead to it making up a smaller proportion of employment in the next few years. The Office for Budget Responsibility, which analyses public finances, has said that between 2010-18 it expected to see the loss of 1.1 million public sector jobs across the country.

London is fortunate in seeing private sector job growth to compensate, at least in numbers. What is not clear from this data is how successful ex-public sector workers are at finding appropriate work in private organisations.

Source data

See also

Jobs concentrated in just 5 of London’s 33 boroughs

The jobs success and housing failure causing a crisis for the capital

Jobs growth shows changing face of work



Jobs concentrated in just 5 of London’s 33 boroughs

people on pavement gloomyNearly 40% of the 5.4 million jobs in London are concentrated in 5 central areas. Westminster dominates the workplace map with more than 700,000 jobs. The City of London ranks second and with the addition of Camden, Tower Hamlets and Southwark the 5 areas account for 2 million jobs.

There are far fewer jobs in the outer boroughs of the capital. Barking and Dagenham has the lowest with just 54,000 followed by Bexley in the south east, Sutton in the south and Waltham Forest in the north east. Hillingdon is the outer London borough that bucks the trend. With 213,000 jobs it is seventh in rank, just behind Islington. 80,000 of the jobs in Hillingdon are at Heathrow Airport.

Jobs per borought map

16% of the jobs in the capital are in the public sector, which is below the 19% national average. However some London boroughs are far more dependent on public sector employment than others. In a central corridor from Tower Hamlets west to Hounslow the public sector makes up a small portion of employment. But in Greenwich it accounts for 27% of jobs. The rate is also high in Newham, Lewisham, Redbridge, and Waltham Forest.

Jobs public sector

Source data:

Employment per borough data  Public sector employment per borough

See also:

Jobs growth shows changing face of work

Self employed map shows huge rise in parts of city