As a chartered occupational psychologist working in the area of recruitment and retention of individuals in a range of professions, I was most interested to read Alison Moore's article 'Situation vacant' (pages 24-27, 18 June).

Ms Moore's article describes a number of approaches to the problem of the lack of GPs.

However, if existing knowledge is taken into account, these approaches are likely to have only a limited - yet costly - impact.

Recent work has shown that there are a number of effective ways to attract and retain individuals within a profession.

Building on the validated work that has been carried out to date, it is entirely possible to design a programme to investigate the problems of attracting new recruits, identifying those individuals who are likely to perform well and those who are more likely to remain in a profession.

Ongoing quantitative and qualitative evaluation can ensure that such a programme is based on more than rhetoric.

Shirley Wilkinson

Director

Orchard Wells

Business Psychologists

Frome

Somerset