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By :
Natalie Drew

Our quarterly round up of what’s happening in the Private Healthcare talent markets. 

Digital Transformation

The deployment of private health hospitals and resources to help the NHS in the fight against Covid-19 meant that planned technology innovation and digital transformation projects were put on hold. But now, they are in full swing, with firms investing heavily to get back on track and make sure projects are completed on time or ahead of plan. 

As we've seen this quarter, this renewed activity has boosted hiring within the private healthcare sector. We are working on huge data migration programmes with the big hospital groups to reduce, streamline and upgrade their current data centre facilities, increasing demand for talent in Citrix, Azure, VMWare and Active Directory - contracts that are expected to continue for up to 18-months. 

IR35 - Inside or Outside?

After many contractors were let go as a first response to COVID-19 last year, it’s been great to see a more buoyant contractor market. The IR35 reforms, which came into effect in April, prompted a cautious response from some businesses who opted for the ‘safe’ option, putting all their contractors on ‘Inside IR35’ contracts, even if this wasn’t the case!

Increasingly this quarter, we’ve seen a trend for contractors to leave their Inside contracts in search of Outside IR35 contracts matching their skills and project experience. As a result, some more cautious businesses are falling behind with crucial projects. 

Since IR35 regulations came in, businesses are becoming more aware of what they mean, particularly, what constitutes an Outside contract. We have seen more confidence in filling positions with accurate contracts over the last few months, resulting in happier contractors who are more loyal to their projects.

The continued drive for nurses

As to be expected, there is no let-up in the huge demand for experienced nurses within the NHS and Private Hospitals. The pandemic has shone a light on the need for many more nurses to support across the wards. Now that elective surgeries are being scheduled, and with predictions of two year waiting lists to clear the backlog caused by COVID-19, we are experiencing huge demand across Urology, Oncology, Chemotherapy and Outpatients. 

And, following the latest government announcement making it mandatory for Care Home Workers to be double jabbed from 11th November 2021, we are anticipating an increase in demand here too.

Will winter freeze hiring again?

The private sector will continue to experience high demand as people look to ‘go private’ in their frustration at long NHS waiting lists. Delays in the implementation of technology projects, intended to increase efficiencies and boost patient care are still being felt, and more contract staff to support the fast deployment of such projects will be needed.

With winter predicted to be a difficult time for the NHS, the private sector may yet be called upon again to help ease the burden and deploy skills and experience where it’s needed most. If the private sector needs to 'lend' hospital capacity to the NHS again, this will inevitably lead to hiring freezes.

Consequently, pressure on hiring within both the NHS and private healthcare sector is set to carry on for some time, with both sectors hoping that winter pressures will be less extensive than predicted.


If you would like any further information about the topics discussed here, or are looking to hire in Life Sciences, Private Healthcare or Charity & Not-for-Profit, please get in touch.


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