Redundancies possible as Department for Business Innovation and Skills announces closure of Sheffield office

BIS permanent secretary Martin Donnelly announces plans to axe department’s Sheffield operation and create a “combined HQ and policy centre in London”

By Jim Dunton

28 Jan 2016

Staff at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills’s Sheffield base have been told that the office will close by 2018, with the prospect of redundancy being raised.

More than 240 staff work at the modern St Paul’s Place office, which deals with policy and corporate services. 

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BIS permanent secretary Martin Donnelly said the end of operations in Sheffield would be accompanied by the creation of a combined central headquarters and policy centre in London, and the establishment of “around six business centres” across the country.

“The unions are being consulted and will be involved throughout the process,” he said.

“It is my top priority that all our staff are fully briefed and consulted on the process. We will provide comprehensive support to all those facing a potential change or loss of job.”

Donnelly added: "Today’s announcement is part of implementing our BIS 2020 strategic plans to modernise the way we work, reduce operating costs and deliver a simpler, smaller department that is more flexible and responsive to stakeholders and businesses."

Civil Service World understands that the new centres would be in addition to existing regional offices, and would concentrate on the delivery of core BIS services.

A BIS spokesman told CSW that it was anticipated the Sheffield office would close during 2018, and that there would be relocation opportunities for displaced staff.

Civil service unions had yet to react to the Sheffield news at the time of publication.


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