A fifth of HS2’s senior roles are unfilled

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A 5th of each elder positions astatine HS2 Ltd are presently unfilled, according to the task promoter’s latest staffing figures.

In total, of the 390 positions classed arsenic elder civilian work Level 1 and above, the astir elder grades available, 82 were unfilled arsenic of 31 January.

Positions noted arsenic unfilled see concern director, wide counsel, transportation director, Phase 2 method director, Phase 2b improvement director, firm affairs manager and stations transportation director. The station of manager of infrastructure, besides labelled arsenic unfilled, comes with a wage of betwixt £105,000 and £208,100.

The fig of vacancies has risen by much than 11 per cent from the 73 unfilled positions successful the erstwhile figures, published successful November 2021.

The precocious fig of elder vacancies has led to questions astir the project’s recruitment process.

The Liberal Democrats has criticised the government’s absorption of the high-speed obstruction successful effect to the summation successful vacancies. Liberal Democrats transport spokesperson Sarah Olney besides pointed to the Department for Transport’s (DfT) nonaccomplishment to name a seat astatine HS2, contempt having much than a twelvemonth to bash so.

As revealed by CN earlier this month, the DfT received 29 applications for the seat role and 5 progressed to the adjacent stage. However, a seat has not been appointed and the recruitment process was restarted this month.

Olney added: “Such an abundance of vacant positions, including the relation of chair, is undoubtedly concerning and reflective of the opaque quality of the HS2 task arsenic a whole.

“This is an incredibly important strategy and 1 that promises to nutrient immoderate fantabulous benefits. It must, however, beryllium undertaken successful a mode that is transparent, and provides the nationalist with assurances that determination is simply a budgeted strategy and a timeline being adhered to.”

The staffing update was uploaded to the government’s website astatine the extremity of January and is updated quarterly.

Commenting connected the fig of vacancies, 1 manufacture adept told CN: “It does look an bonzer level of elder vacancies.

“It’s not similar HS2 is simply a caller task starting off. I tin lone ideate that wage constraint is perchance an issue. Mark [Thurston] is nary fool. He’s not the benignant of feline to marque vacancies physique up and [he] is simply a bully manager. It is absorbing that the assignment of a seat didn’t enactment the past time.”

The vacancy figures travel aft HS2’s apical ineligible representative, Nicole Geoghegan, near the assemblage past month. Board minutes for January amusement that the HS2 sponsorship director, Oliver Bayne, besides understood to person left

Geoghegan had worked astatine HS2 for six years successful the elder presumption wrong the absorption team. Although not a committee member, she was appointed to HS2’s enforcement committee – defined arsenic HS2’s astir elder managers – successful 2017.

The wide counsel and institution caput is liable for each of HS2’s ineligible requirements. This includes the governance and delegations regime, and related administration. A replacement has not yet been appointed.