“Managing early departures from the Scottish public sector”

– in the Scottish Parliament at on 6 June 2013.

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Photo of John Wilson John Wilson Scottish National Party

1. To ask the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body what action it is taking in light of the findings of Audit Scotland’s report, “Managing early departures from the Scottish public sector”. (S4O-02227)

Photo of Mary Scanlon Mary Scanlon Conservative

The Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body exemplified the principles of good practice that the Audit Scotland report identifies when it ran its early severance and retirement scheme in 2010-11. The scheme achieved a reduction of 37 posts and fully paid for itself within two years, with on-going reductions in the staff pay budget. The results were fully disclosed in the SPCB’s 2010-11 annual accounts.

Photo of John Wilson John Wilson Scottish National Party

I thank Mary Scanlon for her full answer, in which she noted that 37 posts have disappeared from the corporate body’s make-up. Were confidentiality agreements signed as part of those settlements?

Photo of Mary Scanlon Mary Scanlon Conservative

I cannot be precise about the exact settlements in 2010-11, but I can tell John Wilson that the corporate body has used compromise agreements. They are a useful means of protecting the organisation from legal challenges relating to departures, but are used only in exceptional circumstances.