HM Revenue & Customs HMRC sign

HMRC eyes £203m annual savings and improved morale as it tweaks Single Departmental Plan

25 May 2016

Latest revisions to the tax authority's Single Departmental Plan include customer service targets and aim of getting staff engagement up to civil service-wide average

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) logo 800 x 450

HMRC got staff cuts timing "badly wrong", says spending watchdog

25 May 2016

National Audit Office says customer service hit by tax authority's decision to reduce staff numbers before online switch was ready – but HMRC says it is now offering its "...

Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn says Labour would bring back national civil service pay bargaining

24 May 2016

Labour leader backs long-running aim of the Public and Commercial Services union, that would see an end to departmental chiefs setting their own pay for staff

Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union general secretary Mark Serwotka

PCS boss Mark Serwotka urges union to back Jeremy Corbyn's Labour — and goads Francis Maude over check-off u-turn

24 May 2016

Public and Commercial Services union general secretary says union must have “very important" debate about its future direction, and says PCS is "still standing" in spite of plans to end deduction...

whitehall numbers, statistics, data

Single Departmental Plans not intended to give public the full picture, says government's lead non-exec

24 May 2016

Sir Ian Cheshire says government will publish only “top level” metrics on progress against published Single Departmental Plans – which are themselves summaries of more detailed plans held...

Derpartment for International Development (DfID) employee at UK aid Disaster Response Center at Kemble Airport

DfID urged to shift focus from “outputs” to long-term impact in water and sanitation schemes

24 May 2016

New report by the UK’s aid watchdog says Department for International Development’s claims on improving access to water and sanitation are credible — but warns department’s focus may be too short-...

Property, housing, Land Registry

Land Registry privatisation: competition watchdog raises monopoly fears

24 May 2016

Competition and Markets Authority says privatised Land Registry could “degrade the terms of access to its monopoly data in order to weaken competition to...

Police computer

New digital standard to help central government and emergency services talk to each other

23 May 2016

Cabinet Office promises new multi agency incident transfer protocol will help improve response to major incidents like terror attacks and floods

Department for Transport permanent secretary Philip Rutnam

Philip Rutnam urges sharper focus on workplace adjustments to help civil servants with disabilities

23 May 2016

Civil service diversity champion wants more info on levels of awareness and take-up of workplace adjustments among disabled officials – and says...

David Cameron with campaigners and activisits at the 2014 girl summit

DfID has opened eyes to violence against women and girls. Here's what it needs to do next

20 May 2016

Our review finds that the Department for International Development has focused global minds on combating violence against women and girls – but...

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Universal Credit chief Neil Couling: Major welfare reform was always going to be a challenge. Here's what I've learned

17 May 2016

Writing exclusively for CSW, Neil Couling – director general of the Department for Work and Pensions' Universal Credit programme – says strong political backing, a "test and learn" approach to...

arrivals, moves, departures, jobs, HR

Latest moves in the civil service & public affairs – May 6

6 May 2016

New appointments in the civil service, UK politics, and public affairs, via our colleagues on Dods People


Transforming Rehabilitation: The MoJ's probation shake-up must not treat charities as "bid candy"

3 May 2016

Experienced rehabilitation charities say they have been left disadvantaged by the bidding process for the Ministry of Justice's probation overhaul

A picture of a prison

Giving prisons more freedom is the right move – but the MoJ needs to sharpen its scrutiny

28 April 2016

The government's vision of autonomous prisons held to account for delivering against defined outcomes is welcome – but it will require a step change in the way performance is measured


“Acknowledge the evidence and avoid change for its own sake" – an ex-senior civil servant's tips for ministers & officials

25 April 2016

What values should guide officials at a time of deep scepticism with democratic institutions? David Faulkner was a civil servant at the Home Office for over 30 years before joining Oxford...

Civil service chief executive John Manzoni

John Manzoni interview: "Guiding people through change always takes longer than you think; it’s always harder than you think"

25 February 2016

Civil service chief executive John Manzoni talks to Suzannah Brecknell about leadership, transforming government and building relationships with the private...

Picture of a male doctor

Health check: ex-perm sec Una O’Brien & the DH’s Peter Howitt on the past, present and future of UK health policy

18 May 2016

Former Department of Health permanent secretary Dame Una O’Brien and the DH's current deputy director of legislation and policy reflect on the lessons from a series of seminars drawing on insights...

David Cameron signing correspondence

How ditching the jargon helped one Fast Streamer make ministerial letters clearer

7 April 2016

Whitehall jargon is often the stuff of parody — and at the 2015 Civil Service Awards, David Cameron introduced a new award for clarity in civil service communications. Max Goldbart talks to the...

Beth Simone Noveck – photo by Joi Ito, released under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

What can Barack Obama's digital adviser teach the civil service about talent hunting?

29 March 2016

A new book by Beth Simone Noveck – a former open-government adviser to both US president Barack Obama and prime minister David Cameron – contains useful lessons for the civil service on finding...