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Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Service Commission: Staff (1 Nov 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The Civil Service Commission currently employs 19 members of staff (18.2 Full Time Equivalent). The secretariat is staffed entirely by civil servants on loan/secondment from a range of government departments, and new recruits are employed by the Cabinet Office prior to being seconded to the Commission. The Commission also provides secretariat services for the Office of the Commissioner for...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Subversion: Russia (13 Jan 2020)

Oliver Dowden: In line with his responsibilities in the Justice and Security Act 2013, the Prime Minister carefully considered and approved the report, and is content that its publication would not prejudice the functions of those bodies that safeguard our national security. We acknowledge the public’s interest in the publication of the report, however the report itself is the property of the independent...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Cabinet Office: Procurement (28 Jun 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The Cabinet Office utilises contingent labour to supply specialist skills and capability not readily available within the Civil Service. 13 contractors currently engaged by the Cabinet Office receive £1000 or more per day. 13 contractors currently engaged by the Cabinet Office receive £1000 or more per day. Out of these, nine are deployed to work on departmental transformation projects in...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Electronic Government (10 Sep 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The 2012 Government Digital Strategy set an ambition for government transactional services to be designed so that they are available digitally by default. The initial Transformation Programme led to digital transformation in 25 high volume transactional service areas. In 2014 the Government Digital Service introduced the Digital Service Standard, a set of 18 criteria to ensure public...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Service Agencies: Living Wage (6 Jul 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The UK Living Wage and London Living Wage figures produced by the Living Wage Foundation, are not statutory figures, and are not therefore legally binding on employers. The UK government applies a statutory National Living Wage for all employees over the age of 25, and National Minimum Wage rates for those under 25, through a policy produced by BEIS and audited and enforced by HMRC....

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Electoral Register (25 Jul 2019)

Oliver Dowden: The Government maintains an estimate of the annual cost of electoral registration. This is supported by cost data from Electoral Registration Officers and volume data provided by electoral management systems and other sources of information. The Government recognises that Electoral Registration Officers within local authorities are best placed to make decisions on how best to target their...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Government Departments: Procurement (29 Mar 2018)

Oliver Dowden: This information is not currently held centrally. BEIS have recently introduced a payment reporting system, which requires large businesses to report on their UK payment practices and performance. Businesses must report 6 monthly on their payment performance starting with their first full financial year that starts on or after 6 April 2017:...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Government Departments: Billing (2 Jan 2019)

Oliver Dowden: The Public Contract Regulations require public sector buyers to pay their suppliers within 30 days and require these payment terms to be passed down the supply chain. Should circumstances of non-compliance arise, we encourage sub-contractors to contact the Public Procurement Review Service in the Cabinet Office who will investigate. The service has helped suppliers reclaim over £5 million in...

Scottish Parliament: Intergovernmental Relations (11 Sep 2019)

Michael Russell: This morning I met Oliver Dowden, HM Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office. The most recent ministerial meeting to take place was the finance ministers’ quadrilateral on 29 August. My colleague the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work discussed the governance and terms of reference for that forum with UK and Welsh Government ministers. The most recent...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Government Departments: ICT (12 Nov 2018)

Oliver Dowden: FOXHOUND is a Cabinet Office-led, cross-government IT programme to develop and deploy a new secure capability for managing sensitive information, including that which is classified up to and at SECRET. The aim is to bear down on the growing information and cyber risk, whilst improving scope for collaboration across the National Security community. The single platform this capability offers...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Public Sector: Procurement (15 May 2018)

Oliver Dowden: Departments are encouraged to maximise competition in order to achieve value for money. Public procurement are required to go through fair and open competition and procurers are not permitted to discriminate based upon the nationality of the supplier. In addition, through the Commercial Operating Standards https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Electoral Registration Officers (26 Jul 2019)

Oliver Dowden: Regulation 23 of the Representation of the People (England and Wales) Regulations 2001 and the Representation of the People (Scotland) Regulations 2001 gives Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) wide-ranging powers to request whatever information and data they require for the purposes of maintaining the electoral registers. EROs are therefore entitled to request datasets from organisations...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Servants: Pay (5 Sep 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The Cabinet Office does not have any plans to hold a public consultation on any elements of the civil service pay remit guidance. The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and I met with the General Secretaries of the FDA, Prospect and PCS trade unions on 27 June to discuss the Civil Service pay guidance, which was published on 25 June. In my capacity as the Minister with responsibility for...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Procurement (11 Jun 2019)

Oliver Dowden: UK public procurement policy is to award contracts on the basis of value for money, which means the optimal combination of cost and quality over the lifetime of the project. Public sector procurers are required to assess value for money from the perspective of the contracting authority, using criteria linked to the subject matter of the contract, including compliance with the published...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Service: Pensions (18 Feb 2019)

Oliver Dowden: The premium deduction is there to protect the Civil Service Pension Scheme against the specific risk of a member marrying or entering a civil partnership after retiring and then pre-deceasing their spouse/civil partner. The amount of the premium is set at a level that takes account of the likelihood of this happening. If the premium were to be repaid to the member’s estate should they...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Servants: Recruitment (12 Mar 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The Cabinet Office promotes civil service career opportunities to people who did not attend university through the Fast Track Apprenticeship Programme, and through apprenticeships more broadly. The Fast Track programme is explicitly marketed as a genuine alternative to university and is promoted all year round through our schools & colleges outreach events, additional diversity outreach...

Written Answers — Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Third Sector (9 Mar 2020)

Oliver Dowden: Civil Society forms an essential part of our communities up and down the country. It includes large, national charities, social enterprises, volunteers and small grassroots organisations but what joins them all is the idea of creating social value to help build a better society. Government funding to civil society is ring-fenced for particular projects or programmes. Grant agreement terms...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Civil Servants: Equality (14 Mar 2018)

Oliver Dowden: The Civil Service Workforce Plan 2016-2020 set out ambition to the UK’s most inclusive employer. To deliver this objective the Government published “A Brilliant Civil Service: becoming the UK’s most inclusive employer” in October 2017, which committed to focusing on religion, belief and non-belief as part of our wider approach to inclusion. A Civil Service Diversity Champion for Faith...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Public Sector: Procurement (15 Oct 2018)

Oliver Dowden: In 2015 the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) strengthened the Prompt Payment Code. The majority of government’s strategic suppliers are signatories to the Code and payment practices of government’s largest suppliers are regularly monitored to ensure that they are in line with the aims of prompt payment policy. While the Prompt Payment Code is voluntary, any...

Written Answers — Cabinet Office: Public Sector: Recruitment (20 Mar 2018)

Oliver Dowden: As a default position, the Civil Service will ‘Ban the Box’ when it advertises job vacancies. There are some business areas across the Civil Service where it will be inappropriate to apply Ban the Box. This will only occur where there is a clear, justifiable business need to understand a candidate’s conviction history at the application stage in the recruitment process. An exception is...


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