Latest Third Sector HR trends revealed in Agenda Consulting’s People Count Third Sector 2015 reports

28 September 2015 – People Count Third Sector 2015, the sector’s leading benchmark study looking at HR and workforce metrics, has been published by research consultancy, Agenda Consulting.

73 organisations with a combined total of 60,000 staff and 192,000 volunteers took part in this year’s study to benchmark their performance against other organisations. They are able to compare metrics on topics such as workforce diversity, recruitment, learning and development, employee relations, and absence management and identify areas to celebrate and gain insight into where improvements can be made.

The findings of People Count Third Sector 2015 have been published in six reports by Agenda Consulting:

  • 2.1 Composition of Workforce and Diversity
  • 2.2 Recruitment, Selection and Retention
  • 2.3 Learning and Development & Performance Management
  • 2.4 Absence Management
  • 2.5 Employee Relations and Reward Strategy
  • 2.6 The HR Function

The study found that the top three concerns for HR departments are recruitment, staff retention, and performance management.

It also highlighted that the proportion of management posts filled internally (24%) has dropped significantly since 2014 (40%), indicating that charities are less inclined to recruit internally for senior positions and are widening their search criteria and recruitment networks to find the right people.

The median cost of recruiting a new employee across all organisations is £1,278. However, economies of scale can be found. For organisations with 100-250 employees, this figure is higher at £2,671 and for organisations with over 1000 employees, the figure is £1,061.

A third of the jobs (33%) in the sector are part-time and this has increased from 28% in 2015. Women are twice as likely to be employed in a part time role.

Whilst three quarters of employees in the sector are women, the number of women holding senior management positions (53%) or taking up CEO positions (32%) has remained static since 2014.

However, around a half of organisations (51%) have pledged to do an equal pay audit in the next three years and 26% of respondents have undertaken one in the past three years.
Another key trend was that absence rates decreased significantly, the smaller the organisation. Organisations with fewer than 100 employees had a median figure of 2.4 days absence per employee, whereas in organisations over 1,000 this figure rose to 11.4 days absence per employee.

Roger Parry, CEO, Agenda Consulting said, “The People Count study provides unparalleled insight into the latest HR and people management practices in the charity sector. The findings this year show that recruitment and retention are key challenges for organisations. Absence management is clearly a major issue for larger organisations and we would encourage them to explore more deeply what lies behind the metrics. On a positive note, the number of charities looking at equal pay audits is particularly encouraging.”

Organisations can still participate now and benchmark their organisation against this year’s findings.

For more information contact:

Kathryn Hughes, Kayak PR on: 0208 549 3879/07801 823 839

For more information about People Count Third Sector 2015 reports go to:

About Agenda Consulting

Agenda Consulting is a research consultancy, helping not-for-profit organisations achieve their mission through better understanding of their people.

They offer:

  • Employee and Volunteer Surveys
  • Pulse, On-boarding, and Exit Surveys
  • People Consulting
  • Reward
  • HR and Volunteer Management Benchmarking

For more information contact:

Clare Harris, Head of Business Development, Agenda Consulting on: 01865 263720

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