White: bottom 10% rule will hit perm secs too

Permanent secretaries will be covered by the new rules on performance set out in the Civil Service Reform Plan, Sharon White, director general of public spending in the Treasury, told the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Monday. This means that the poorest performing 10 per cent of permanent secretaries will be identified and given extra support and training.

By Civil Service World

27 Jun 2012

“One of the things we’re looking to do is have a stronger performance management system, partly reflecting comments from the PAC in the past,” she said, adding that “for permanent secretaries as for other civil servants, there will be a clearly identified bottom 10 per cent of performers based on objectives that will include the ability to manage their finances effectively and to deliver their projects effectively.”

Asked whether permanent secretaries’ pay should be dependent on their delivering specific projects, as measured by the targets set out in an ‘Integrated Assurance Plan’ (IAP), she responded that “my own view is that… implementation ought to be part of permanent secretaries’ objectives [and] performance-related pay, [but] personally I would not make an IAP – which is very specific, very concrete – part of their objectives.”

She added that “the issue of delivery is more important than specifying an IAP which may feel quite micro and very easy to bypass for a particular permanent secretary.”

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