Despite the reduction in recruitment activity during 2009, and the burgeoning labour market, two thirds (68%) of organisations have experienced recruitment difficulties, due mainly to a lack of necessary specialist skills (67%). As a result, attracting and recruiting key staff is the top resourcing objective for eight in 10 (79%) of nearly 500 organisations surveyed.
Half of the organisations (53%) taking part in this survey said the recession has had a negative impact on their resourcing budget for 2010. Traditionally less affected by resourcing cuts, the public sector reported that they expect to supersede the private sector in reporting cuts (59% compared with 51% in the private sector) this year, in line with current public-sector reforms from the coalition Government.
The news comes as the CIPD reported as many as 725,000 jobs could be lost in the public sector by 2015.
However, the proportion of organisations planning to implement a recruitment freeze in 2010 has almost halved since last year (22% compared with 42% in 2009).
The public sector bucks the trend, however, with 51% planning to implement a recruitment freeze (compared with 16% in the private sector) and 68% planning to reduce the number of recruits they hire (compared with 32% in the private sector).
This increased pressure on budgets has led more organisations (66% compared with 40% in 2009) to focus in on developing talent in-house. And more than half of the organisations surveyed (54%) are now using methods to retain rather than recruit new talent, up from 36% last year.
With recruitment costs being tightly reined in, organisations are also reducing their reliance on recruitment agencies, with more expecting to use new media/technology to recruit now (49%) compared with 2009 (31%). And more expect to recruit key talent/niche areas this year (65%) compared to 2009 (53%).
Claire McCartney, CIPD resourcing and talent planning adviser, said: "Organisations are facing increased competition to attract and retain the talent needed for their future success, with twice as many telling us that the pool of available talent to hire has fallen.
"Limited budgets mean organisations and HR departments have to think creatively - doing more for less is not so easy. However, by developing internal talent pipelines employees can benefit from increased opportunities, development and progression and the employer can fulfil the skills requirement for the job.
"Although private-sector companies are finding ways to restore profitability, the public sector, as we are now seeing, is increasingly going through recruitment freezes and reductions in headcount and the number of new recruits. That said, most other sectors, particularly financial services, are ramping up their graduate recruitment programmes, giving a lift to new and existing graduates working to get their foot in the door.
"All in all we see great potential within the private sector for talent development, but a rather bleak outlook in the public sector for some time to come."