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A further 25,000 job cuts needed to meet Civil Service reform plans – IfG

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has seen the largest decrease in staff numbers compared to any other ministry since 2010, analysis by the Institute for Government (IfG) has revealed. 

The organisation’s Whitehall Monitor shows that in the last five years, the DCLG workforce has shrunk by 35%. The managed department now contains 1,630 people – down from 2,520 four years ago. 

IfG added that the last quarterly staff numbers release before the election shows that the Civil Service has reduced in size by 15% since Q3 2010. 

However, it was noted that if the target to achieve an overall 23% reduction in staffing numbers by 2015 – as set out in the 2012 Civil Service Reform Plan – then a further 25,000 staff would need to be cut.

Nearly all central government departments are smaller than in 2010. Only the Department of Energy & Climate Change, Department for International Development and the Cabinet Office have increased in size since the 2010 spending review. 

For the most part, the largest managed departments have borne the bulk of the cuts – DWP, MoJ and MoD have all decreased in size by 25% or more.  HMRC, the third-largest department, has reduced by only 15% although this still amounts to almost 10,000 people. 

The IfG said: “The number of civil servants has been cut by more than 70,000 since the Spending Review in 2010, meaning the Civil Service is at its smallest since before the Second World War. Particular departments – DWP, HMRC, MoJ and MoD – account for most of the reduction in absolute terms, given their size. 

“The biggest headcount reductions in percentage terms have come at the most junior (administrative officers and assistants) levels. Different departments have very different grade mixes, from top-heavy DfID (where the dominance of grades 6 and 7 has become more pronounced since 2010) to administration-heavy MoJ.” 

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email


Jonesm   13/04/2015 at 13:45

It is interesting that the Civil Service cuts affect predominantly the most junior grades. In the social services department I work for, the biggest percentage decrease is in senior managerial posts.

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