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Civil Service

2015: A year of transition

Posted by: and , Posted on: - Categories: Civil Service Leaders
The Home Office building
The Home Office

Firstly, Happy New Year!  I hope that those who, like me, were able to take leave over the Christmas period had an enjoyable and restful break with family and friends.  It now seems very far away.

Of course, many of our colleagues across the public service worked through the holiday, ensuring that our streets remained safe, our borders secure, hospitals open and that other essential public services continued uninterrupted. On behalf of all our fellow citizens, thank you. And a special mention should go to all those tackling the Ebola outbreak both here and in West Africa, an effort the UK has led internationally.

Sir Jeremy Heywood’s latest blog sets out his priorities for the Civil Service in 2015, but I thought today I would highlight some of the external challenges the Civil Service as a whole will be facing.

In 2015, we face both challenging and uncertain domestic and international contexts. Ebola, the fall in the oil price, the continuing threat to our homeland security and renewed uncertainty in the Eurozone will all have domestic as well as overseas effects. At home, the recovering economy, devolution and high expectations for public services will set the context for the General Election campaign.

Over the next few months, the focus for all departments will remain on delivering the Coalition Government’s programme. Overall, we are in good shape, but we must finish the job.

The Home Office’s remaining priorities include completing the implementation of the 2014 Immigration Act, delivering exit checks, developing a new strategy to counter extremism and continuing to lead the cross-government - indeed the whole-of-public service - effort to address the abuse of our most vulnerable citizens, notably child sex exploitation, past and present.

Meanwhile, we must also plan ahead for the new challenges of the next Parliament. Of course, we won’t know until the ballot boxes close what the election will bring, but what is certain is that we must continue to transform public services in the age of austerity and the digital era.

So, as well as the inevitable drink less/eat better/exercise more, my New Year’s resolution is to maintain a relentless focus on delivering this Government’s programme while readying ourselves for the challenges ahead.  What’s yours?

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  1. Comment by Syl posted on

    ACTUALLY (I hate that word) the letter was to all staff. There was indeed a thank you to staff who didn't get a break over the festive period.

  2. Comment by Roxy posted on

    The same tune is being played: more cuts, more-reshaping, more negative news. Meanwhile, the bankers have never been brought to book for their part in the 2008 financial disaster. Privatisation continues with friends of those in power taking over certain areas with their own cosy businesses which equals profit. Here in my neck of the Civil Service woods, more Band C posts are being created and Band E posts becoming invisible. So, if there is an age of austerity, why are so many higher paid jobs being created? Is the future Civil Service a Band C empire only? The maths on that one doesn't add up to me.

  3. Comment by A Worker posted on

    I will admit, after readingthe first paragraph I lost intrest in this blog entry.

    I along with thousands of others were working over the Christmas and New Year period, we don't just close the doors to enjoy the festivities, along with the alledgedly 80% of all DWP staff were in, but I doubt the powers that be were around till 5pm on New Years Eve, but that is another matter.

    Please remember there are a huge amount of workers, dealing with the public, and we don't just get rota'd in to cover as one of the chiefs of DWP seams to think happens at this time of year.

    Name withheld.