Latest data reveals more is needed to attract candidates to the pharma sector

Broadbean’s statistics also reveal a 25% decline in the number of applicants year-on-year between June 2021 and June 2022.

This drop in qualified resources has been a concern for some time, with specialist pharmaceutical roles being added to the Home Office’s shortage occupation list in March 2021, making it easier for international experts to apply for a skilled worker visa through the UK’s immigration system.

However, with numbers continuing to drop over a year later, it’s clear that more needs to be done to attract people to the sector.

Alex Fourlis, Managing Director at Broadbean Technology said, “The UK’s skills crisis is continuing to be a focal issue, and for good reason as our data shows that these shortages are impacting almost every business, across every sector.

“While there is an undeniable shortage in blue-collar jobs such as retail and logistics, it’s actually the highly skilled sectors, such as pharmaceuticals that are more of a concern for the UK’s economic bounce back, with candidates for these positions taking longer to train up and being harder to find.

“We’ve now reached a critical point where pharmaceutical firms need to rebuild and nurture dwindling talent pools, while also utilising innovative technology and maximising partnerships with external talent suppliers in order to find the undiscovered talent that is so desperately needed.”

David Hazeldine, Head of Practice – Pharmaceutical & Life Sciences at Procurement Heads, said, “Procurement and supply chain specialists played a critical role in the global response to the pandemic, dramatically heightening the function’s profile.”

“Furthermore, the pharmaceutical industry was clearly pivotal in the development and manufacturing of vital drugs and products needed for the fight against Covid.

“When you add into the mix geopolitical issues and their huge impact upon global pharmaceutical supply chains, Broadbean’s data comes as no real surprise.

“Over the last three months I’ve seen a real spike in demand for Third Party Risk Managers and wider digital optimisation specialists, largely because of a sharp focus on Supply Assurity and Supplier Resilience; a need to drive performance, improve governance and interpret supplier data to drive value creation.  

“As Alex says, utilising technology and maximising partnerships with external talent suppliers is crucial.

“Professional recruitment consultants and agencies have deep sector knowledge, as well as vast networks of talent that is not actively looking for their next role, but might consider a position if approached by a trusted partner.

“And the most successful recruitment agencies are harnessing technology – whether that is through behavioural assessments, coaching or through automation – to give the hiring company the best chance to stand out to candidates.”

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