Temporary Employment

Department of Health written question – answered on 22nd January 2015.

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Photo of Chris Leslie Chris Leslie Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the amount that his Department will spend on temporary staff in each of the next five years.

Photo of Jane Ellison Jane Ellison The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

The Department uses temporary staff, both civil servants on fixed term contracts and interim and agency workers, to provide flexibility to meet variations in workloads, fill short term resourcing or skills gaps and to help deliver time limited projects. The use of such staff is an important element of managing our resources in the context of the expectation of reducing staffing numbers and admin budgets over the next five years.

The following table shows the estimated spend on payroll-funded staff that are on fixed term contracts, over the next three years. These staff represent around 2.5% of the workforce and around 2.4% of the pay bill.

Estimated spend on payroll staff on fixed term contracts





Estimated spend for payroll staff on fixed-term contracts

£2.75 million

£2.66 million

£2.58 million

Estimated numbers of staff on fixed-term contracts (full-time equivalent)




For interim and agency workers, no forecast is available for the spend on such staff and the Department is looking to reduce their use. All interim and agency staff will be funded from within the Department’s pay budget.

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