Cabinet Office and Prime Minister: Staff

Cabinet Office written question – answered am ar 16 Mai 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of The Earl of Sandwich The Earl of Sandwich Crossbench

To ask His Majesty's Government, following the publication of the Institute for Government report Power with purpose: Final report of the Commission on the Centre of Government, on 10 March, whether (1) the staff at Number 10 have increased to 350 under the Conservative government, and (2) Cabinet Office staff have doubled to over 15,000 during the same period; and if so, what plans they have, if any, to reduce those numbers.

Photo of Baroness Neville-Rolfe Baroness Neville-Rolfe Minister of State (Cabinet Office)

The Prime Minister's Office is an integral part of the Cabinet Office for both management and staffing purposes and is not a standalone department.

The total of c15,000 includes the UK Statistics Authority which is a non-ministerial department and is a government department in its own right, accountable to parliament through its sponsoring ministers and therefore should not be included in the total Cabinet Office FTE.

Since 2011 the role and remit of the Cabinet Office has expanded significantly. At that point in time, the Department’s role was largely to support the Prime Minister and the operation of Government through the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministers’ Private Offices, Cabinet Secretariats and the Efficiency and Reform Group.

By 2021, the role of the Cabinet Office in managing the Civil Service had grown significantly to incorporate a number of new major delivery responsibilities, including responsibility for UK border plans, UK Security Vetting (UKSV) functions, and functions formerly overseen by the now-closed Department for Exiting the European Union (DEXEU). The creation of the Government Commercial Organisation and the move of the Fast Stream Government Recruitment Service from HMRC also saw a combined c2000+ FTE join the Cabinet Office between 2017 and 2018.

On 2 October 2023, the Chancellor announced an immediate cap on civil servant headcount, reducing the size of the Civil Service to pre-pandemic levels across Whitehall by stopping any further Civil Service expansion, increasing efficiencies and boosting productivity.

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