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GDPR and new systems sees demand for HR staff soar

Monica Lochrie
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The introduction of GDPR legislation and businesses investing in new systems saw demand for HR staff in Scotland surge in 2018. Contributor Monica Lochrie, Senior Consultant of HR – HRC Recruitment 

The annual HR Salary Survey for 2018 from HRC Recruitment found there was a 33 percent increase in vacancies for HR positions in Scotland compared to 2017. The company’s analysis also said there was a 40 percent rise in temporary and contract vacancies.

Salaries at the junior end of the market rose, with average entry-level HR administrators commanding £19,000 per year – up on £17,000 two years ago. The increase was also heavily influenced by the growing demand for temporary junior and mid-level staff to implement compliance measures for GDPR legislation and new HR systems. 

There was also an increase in vacancies around the £40,000 per annum mark, as businesses sought to replace higher-earning leavers with managerial staff. This saw demand for immediately-available professionals who had previously earned more than £50,000 struggle to secure work. 

Monica Lochrie, Senior Consultant of HR – HRC Recruitment, said: “The introduction of more technology is supposed to automate work and reduce the need for humans – but it had the opposite effect in HR last year. Increasing investment in HR systems and the introduction of GDPR meant we saw a notable rise in the need for staff to come in and work on the delivery of these projects – we expect that to continue into 2019, with an emphasis on some of the more niche HR roles. 

“While there has been almost unprecedented demand for junior staff, a worrying trend is the difficulty many graduates face as they try to break into HR as a career. Many businesses will only consider candidates with experience, which can be a catch-22 for those starting out. Nevertheless, this does underline the importance of good internship programmes, for both employers and students.

“Record employment, a diminished talent pool, and the small matter of Brexit will mean getting the right HR talent will be challenging for businesses over the next few months. However, if a company can offer a competitive salary and overall benefits package, with an emphasis on flexible working and holidays, they will be in a good place to attract the best people.”


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