Department for Work and Pensions: Staff

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 12 September 2023.

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Photo of Vicky Foxcroft Vicky Foxcroft Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people are employed by his Department to determine the outcome of work capability assessments as of 5 September 2023.

Photo of Tom Pursglove Tom Pursglove The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

The latest information of the number of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) staff who are in paid employment and undertake decisions on Work Capability Assessments is in the table below:

Work Capability Assessment (WCA)


Universal Credit (UC)


Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)




Source: Derived from the department’s Activity Based Model (ABM). Figures have been rounded to the nearest 10 and may not sum to the total due to the rounding.


  • Data is drawn at the end of each month. Data is correct as of end of August 2023.
  • Figures were derived from the department’s Activity Based Model (ABM), which provides Full Time Equivalent (FTE) figures based on point in time estimate by line managers. They cover only FTE of staff with paid employment. They have been rounded to the nearest 10.
  • Figures include staff undertaking Work Capability Assessment decision making activities, including training, ESA WCA mandatory reconsiderations, ESA WCA appeals and telephony. UC mandatory reconsiderations and appeals have not been included as figures include all FTE working on UC mandatory reconsiderations and appeals, not just those related to Work Capability Assessment outcomes.
  • Management, administrative and support staff are not included. Figures do not include staff working on overtime.
  • The data is frequently revised and changes to definitions / benefits / DWP structure effect comparisons over time. It should therefore be treated with caution and must be seen as an indication of how staff have been deployed.
  • The number of staff is unpublished management information, collected and intended for internal department use and has not been quality assured to National Statistics or Official Statistics standard. As the department holds the information, we have released it.

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