Saturday, 25 September 2010

Can we offset public sector cuts

Public sector cuts are coming ... indeed, in some case they are already here.

The doom-mongers suggests that there will be massive cuts in services resulting ... but is this necessarily true?

Local government is lagging behind the private sector in terms of getting the most out of staff, according to research into workplace productivity by Knox D'Arcy.

The management consultancy's study found that more than two thirds of junior staff members' working day is lost on average, while the staff utilisation rate for local government stands at 32%.

In comparison, the private sector had a rate of 44%. If the public sector matched this rate, staff numbers could be cut by approximately 500,000 without affecting services.

Paul Weekes, the report's author and principal consultant at Knox D'Arcy, said: "Put simply, by matching average private sector staff utilisation levels, local government could increase its productivity by roughly a third.

"This sort of dramatic increase would help significantly offset the cuts that are on the agenda as part of the government's austerity package."

It was also found that managers and supervisors within local government were spending fewer than 15 minutes a day engaged in "active" management tasks, such as following up work assigned to their team.

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