Since 2004, central government has sought to reduce the cost of administering finance, human resources and procurement services through sharing back-office functions. In previous examinations the Committee found that the Government had not yet realised the potential to save taxpayers' money. The renewed focus on improving shared services is welcomed. The Committee expects the Cabinet Office to engage constructively with their recommendations. This report considers five of the eight shared service centres. Whilst performing adequately, they had cost Ap1.4 billion to build and operate compared to an expected cost of Ap0.9 billion. These five centres were also expected to have saved Ap159 million by the end of 2010-11. In the event, the Ministry of Justice centre broke-even, the Department of Work and Pensions and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs centres did not track their total savings, and the Department for Transport and Research Councils UK, have reported a net cost to date of Ap255 million. The current strategy will only be effective if the Cabinet Office demonstrates strong leadership. So far it has been left up to individual departments and their arm's length bodies to decide whether they use shared service centres leading to low take-up. Those bodies which have become customers of shared service centres have retained their own processes resulting in over-complicated systems which also undermine the scope for efficiency. The Cabinet Office should also develop comparable data on the cost and quality of services provided by the shared services centres and should consider whether it can extend its shared services strategy to include other common functions needed by central government departmentsMany of the customers of shared service centres have insisted on services that have been tailored to their systems rather than the shared service centre providing one process suitable for all customers.lg This has resulted in overly complexanbsp;...
|Title||:||Efficiency and Reform in Government Corporate Functions Through Shared Service Centres|
|Author||:||Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: Committee of Public Accounts|
|Publisher||:||The Stationery Office - 2012-07-01|