Government Jobs More Appealing to Job Seekers

July 8, 2009 ( - The down economy and volatility within the private sector have many job seekers shifting their focus to government jobs, according to a new CareerBuilder survey of 2,963 workers.

Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they were interested in jobs within the public sector, with 41% indicating they are interested in jobs within the Federal government, and 47% reporting they are interested in jobs within state and local government. More than one-third (34 percent) of job seekers surveyed said that the economic stimulus plan made them more interested in positions within government, according to a press release.

When asked what most appealed to them about working for the government, job seekers pointed to job stability (21%), training opportunities (16%), and a chance to make a difference (13%). In addition, job seekers said that government organizations can make their job offers more attractive by clearly carving out career paths (11%), offering flexible schedules (10%), and conveying a sense of ownership in one’s position (10%).

When asked what could deter them from applying for public sector positions, workers pointed to office politics or red tape (37%) and the fear that they’ll be replaced when a new administration is instated (13%). Concerns over the government’s ability to pay as much as the private sector (12%) and offer upward mobility (5%) were also cited.