SPVS recruitment survey warns of staffing ‘disaster’

Concern of a recruitment disaster within the veterinary career has been highlighted by a SPVS survey.

Greater than half of veterinary practices that took half within the SPVS Recruitment Survey 2017 didn’t have a full complement of vets, with 28% of those reporting a extreme impact on their capability to cowl out-of-hours work.

Responses additionally confirmed most practices had tried to recruit a vet prior to now yr, with many experiencing difficulties. A complete of 10 practices that marketed for a brand new vet didn’t get any functions and 31% did not discover a appropriate candidate on the time of responding. Of people who did obtain functions, 38% got here from the UK.

Lower than 1 / 4 of respondents (23%) reported discovering it “straightforward” to recruit an acceptable applicant (place stuffed in lower than three months); two years in the past, this determine was greater than 30%, suggesting a worsening scenario.

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From the opposite aspect of the equation, the most typical causes cited by candidates rejecting job affords included an unwillingness to do OOH work and dissatisfaction with working hours. The very fact most respondents stated they deliberate to cut back working hours suggests the disaster might worsen, with employers pressured to search out extra vets to cowl these “lacking” hours.


Performed between 25 September and 6 October, the survey drew 276 responses: 238 from vets and 38 from observe managers. The vast majority of vet respondents have been UK nationals, with eight.9 per cent from the EU and three.four per cent hailing from different international locations.

Recruitment within the career was described as an issue of “disaster proportions” by 14 respondents – a sentiment echoed by SPVS president Brian Faulkner.

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He stated: “This survey gives precious proof to assist the career as they work with the Authorities and faculties to attempt to counter this disaster in recruitment, which threatens to worsen with Brexit. If not tackled, it would change into more and more troublesome for vets to offer a passable 24-hour well being service for the UK’s pets, horses and cattle.”

SPVS vice-president elect Peter Brown, who oversaw the survey, stated: “A message to employers is these practices providing good coaching and assist, along with internships for brand new or current graduates, appeared much less prone to be dealing with recruitment points.”

  • Learn the total story within the 6 November concern of Veterinary Occasions.

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