Not so long ago, a job in a public administration office was linked with prestige and security of employment. Now prestige is increasingly giving way to job security. The public sector is usually associated with steady employment, and also with a low salary. Although the stereotype of clerks mechanically doing their work, tethered to their desks all day long, is slowly becoming obsolete, a job at a public administration office is hardly ever a goal for young careerists. Much more easily and quickly – often without multi-stage recruitment procedures – they can get employed with private companies and embark on a straight path of promotion, which in the case of most public-sector jobs is still very formalized and time-consuming.

And how is working in a public administration office perceived by the people employed there? Excessive workload and extensive scope of responsibilities. High requirements with regard to good manners and education. No cooperation between co-workers. Rigid workplace hierarchy, stiff procedures and supervisors of the old school. Additionally, enquirers' constant criticism and dissatisfaction, as well as a bad reputation of the profession.

Trying to meet the job market demands, public administration offices are giving up many conservative rules which block recruitment. For instance, they introduced receiving job applications by email, and their job ads can be found not only in the press, but also on the websites of popular recruitment agencies. 

Young people do not choose a career in public administration offices for at least 3 reasons: low earnings, in many cases no opportunities for professional fulfilment, and the spectre of office procedures. They most often choose to work  in the private sector, where they are offered higher earnings, especially in the first few years of employment, and the opportunity for a quick promotion and additional professional training. Some young people who have embarked on their career paths in public administration offices quickly decide, after gaining some minimal work experience, to go abroad or to work as experts in specialist committees.

By contrast, those who decide to work in the public sector are lured by fixed working hours (the well-known 8am to 4pm), clear and rather fixed scope of responsibilities, transparent promotion procedures, a contract for an indefinite period, work atmosphere, and especially much less fierce competition or complete lack of competition. But is this all that is related with the job of a clerk in a public administration office? More and more frequently, the offices decide to provide training for their employees, subsidize their post-master's degree programmes and foreign language courses, as well as award bonuses quarterly. They are more and more interested in employing young staff and want to take on the best candidates. Also, more and more frequently job ads from the public sector iclude requirements such as the ability to work in a team, creativity, adaptability to changes, interpersonal skills and communicativeness.

The reasons for the changes in public administration offices, including those regarding their image, is to make others, especially young people, begin  to see them as friendly employers. Regrettably, in this respect, they are far behind the private sector. Western concerns are especially well-known for  huge investments in employer branding, and for years they have been making efforts to guarantee that their trademarks are recognizable. Those companies lure their potential employees, when they are still university students, with trainings and workshops. So, a paid internship and the opportunity to do interesting projects in a prestigious company is contrastasted with a boring job of filling in and ordering documents for many hours. Unless this image of a job in the public sector changes, public administration offices will not begin to be perceived as worthwhile employers, and the jobs in the public sector – as more attractive.