Workforce, Pensions and Training

Leaders urged to boycott all-male panels as local gov women ‘sick and fed up’

20.02.17: Local government leaders and chief executives are being urged to boycott all-male panels in events, such as the upcoming Northern Powerhouse Conference, with Wigan Council boss Donna Hall telling PSE that she and her colleagues are “sick...

Liverpool council to axe 300 jobs to plug £90m funding gap

17.02.17: Liverpool City Council has stated that around 300 jobs would be cut while protecting frontline services as much as possible as the authority attempts to plug a £90m funding gap by 2020. The news comes from a council meeting document o...

FDA warns of ‘cheerleader’ civil servants under Brexit plans

06.02.17: The Civil Service Commission has announced controversial special measures relaxing the Civil Service’s recruitment rules in order to help it tackle the burden of dealing with Brexit, leading to criticism from public service unions. In...

LGPS wastes up to £9bn on ‘unnecessary’ fund managers

02.02.17: Local government pension schemes (LGPS) have been haemorrhaging money to external fund managers and are rapidly running out of cash to meet pensions, a think tank has claimed. A review undertaken for the Centre for Policy Studies revealed t...

GM and London handed £100m Work and Health Programme powers

01.02.17: Greater Manchester and London have been handed £100m to develop and deliver localised versions of the government’s new Work and Health Programme in an effort to help thousands of disadvantaged people gain work. Whitehall confirm...

IFS: ‘Cavalier’ apprenticeship target for public sector must be dropped

31.01.17: The government has suffered a harsh blow to its ambitious plan to create three million apprenticeships by 2020, with the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) warning that employers will have a big incentive to simply re-label existing training sch...

Consistent approach needed to eliminate gender pay gap, says Greening

25.01.17: The government has changed the date for public sector organisations to capture data surrounding the gender pay gap to 31 March 2017, instead of 5 April, following its consultation on the potential regulations. Under current proposals the go...

Councils slam ‘disappointing’ move to base apprenticeship target on headcount

23.01.17: The upcoming apprenticeship target of 2.3% for the public sector workforce, due to come into force in April, will be based on headcount rather than full-time equivalent (FTE) – a move the LGA has branded as disappointing. In its respo...

Public sector workers face real pay cut of 9.3% by 2020

18.01.17: Public sector workers including midwives, teachers and social workers are set to lose thousands of pounds from their pay packet by 2020, new analysis has revealed. Data published by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) has shown that some worker...

PCS calls for Treasury to loosen purse strings on 1% pay cap

12.01.17: The Public and Commercial Services (PCS), the biggest union for Civil Service staff, has joined calls for a new pay agreement for staff in Whitehall by stressing that lower-grade employees must also be represented in any deal. Last week, th...

Over 90% of senior civil servants believe pay structures ‘not fit for purpose’

06.01.17: Stagnant wages are demoralising the Civil Service at the time when its expertise is most needed to deliver Brexit, professional union the FDA has warned. In its submission to the Senior Salaries Review Body (SSRB), the FDA included the resu...

FCA proposals a ‘counterintuitive’ threat to LGPS infrastructure spend

05.01.17: Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) funds could be prevented from investing in infrastructure under new regulations, the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) has warned. The PLSA has published its response to a Financial Cond...

The long and winding path to reform

28.12.16: Cllr Roger Phillips, chair of the Local Government Pension Scheme Advisory Board, analyses the opportunities and challenges facing the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) in the short to medium term, and the plans to create eight multi-billio...

LGPS investment pools must have firm governance structures

28.12.16: Neil Sellstrom, treasury and pensions advisor at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), discusses the need for firm governance structures in Local Government Pensions Scheme (LGPS) investment pooling arrangements. ...

Creating local systems of employability support

26.12.16: The current approach to employability in many areas is simply failing, according to new research. But Paul O’Brien, chief executive of the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE), explains how there are huge opportunities to make...

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LGA: New homes data positive, but still failing to meet growing housing need

24/02/2017LGA: New homes data positive, but still failing to meet growing housing need

New figures released by the government have shown that the number of new build homes has continued to rise to its highest level since 2007, but c... more >
Lancashire still pushing for devo deal despite two councils withdrawing support

24/02/2017Lancashire still pushing for devo deal despite two councils withdrawing support

Plans put forward for a devolution deal to join together 15 councils in Lancashire in a combined authority will still go ahead, despite two counc... more >
Councils divided as HS2 Bill is given Royal Assent

23/02/2017Councils divided as HS2 Bill is given Royal Assent

HS2 will be the “catalyst” in driving economic growth in the West Midlands as the eagerly anticipated high-speed rail link was given ... more >

editor's comment

21/02/2017Untapped potential

As PSE went to press, the government had just released its Industrial Strategy green paper, which has an ambitious aim to “improve living standards and economic growth by increasing productivity and driving growth across the whole country”.  Overall, the strategy was welcomed across the public sector. However, as you&rsqu... read more >

last word

Some libraries are better than others

Some libraries are better than others

Helen Milner, chief executive of Good Things Foundation, formerly the Tinder Foundation, expands on the organisation’s recent claims that protecting libraries at all costs could be hol... more > more last word articles >
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And justice for all

23/02/2017And justice for all

Nothing less than a ‘whole-place’ pooling of public service budgets and devolution of criminal justice system powers to local level can create the conditions for community transformation, argue former communities secretary Hazel Blears and Lord Patel, chairman of the Mental Health Act Commission. Reform of the Criminal Justice... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >


Shaping the future of local government through districts

23/02/2017Shaping the future of local government through districts

Mark Pawsey (pictured), the MP for Rugby and the chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for District Councils, explains why he hopes t... more >
Bristol: the booming smart city

23/02/2017Bristol: the booming smart city

Barney Smith, CEO at Bristol Is Open, explains how the innovative project can help make cities more liveable and sustainable. Bristol is the... more >
Where next for devolution?

23/02/2017Where next for devolution?

Andrew Walker, policy expert on devolution at the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU), explains why devolution in England needs a shot in th... more >
Introducing learning analytics

23/02/2017Introducing learning analytics

Learning analytics make use of the data generated as we learn and teach in order to improve learning and teaching. Rebecca Ferguson, a senior lec... more >


McMahon: I worry that the public are not part of the devolution conversation

20/12/2016McMahon: I worry that the public are not part of the devolution conversation

Jim McMahon, Labour’s shadow minister for local government and devolution, talks to PSE’s David Stevenson about the need to radically... more >
Solace president mandate: Champion diversity and celebrate great public services

20/12/2016Solace president mandate: Champion diversity and celebrate great public services

Jo Miller, the recently-elected president of Solace, talks to PSE about the need for championing great public services and ensuring inclusion at ... more >
The secret to the success of one public estate

19/08/2016The secret to the success of one public estate

Central government has faced strong criticism of its many estate schemes in recent years, but one in particular seems to steer clear of the backl... more >
Joint ventures: Are we better together?

19/04/2016Joint ventures: Are we better together?

Vivien Holland, local government advisory director at Grant Thornton UK LLP, examines the potential of Joint Ventures for local authorities going... more >

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