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Publication, Part of

NHS Vacancy Statistics England April 2015 – March 2021 Experimental Statistics

Experimental statistics, Official statistics


This is the latest compendium publication in the NHS Vacancy Statistics series containing vacancy related data for the NHS.

The figures included in this series provide data from four different sources on recruitment information for the NHS.

Data from NHS Jobs, the Electronic Staff Record (ESR) and Trac Recruitment Management Software (Trac) provide a range of proxy data sources for NHS vacancies. The series also includes management information related to vacancies within the NHS which have been collected by NHS England and NHS Improvement.

Due to the complex nature of how NHS vacancy data is defined and collected, all data sources should be treated with a degree of caution. To help users in their assessment of the features of each of the sources, we have included an additional resource within the data tables which helps to describe any nuances associated with each of the separate sources.

NHS Digital look forward to developing the compendium publication further for future iterations of the series included in the Experimental Statistics review. We remain committed to providing the best, most accurate and useful information possible to support the NHS and to serve the public good.

To help with the development of this publication, feedback is continually welcomed and can be sent to: [email protected] with the subject heading ‘NHS Vacancy Statistics publication feedback’.

Key Facts

During the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been significant disruption to recruitment activity within the NHS. This is apparent from the significantly lower reported advertised vacancies between March and June 2020 as the NHS was fully focused on dealing with the first wave of the pandemic. Whilst pressures on the NHS caused directly by the pandemic have fluctuated since March 2020, it remains apparent that recruitment activity has similarly been disrupted.

Whilst some critical recruitment increased in response to the situation, other elements were significantly reduced – this is particularly the case for certain Staff Groups. However, we believe that the headline figures included in the bulletin remain of immediate use, as they represent the situation as it was at the time, but year on year comparisons should be avoided.

Last edited: 2 June 2021 10:29 am