Social Security Benefits

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered at on 1 May 2024.

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Photo of Angela Eagle Angela Eagle Labour, Wallasey

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps his Department is taking to increase the number of claims processed within planned processing timescales.

Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Department has seen a sustained increase in applications and demand for DWP services as a result of the pandemic and subsequent cost of living pressures, as well as ongoing publicity campaigns such as Help for Households and Pension Credit take-up.

Whilst we have seen an overall improvement in claims processed within planned timescales, and we expect that overall performance to continue to improve in the 24-25 figures, we acknowledge that across our services more needs to be done to improve the number of claims processed within the planned timescales.

Through recruitment in 23-24 we have started 17,166 people in new roles (and have further candidates due to start in Q1 of 24-25). This level of recruitment has resulted in a net increase in our Service Delivery resource levels to meet customer demand. We also have utilised our existing contracts with external partners to increase our service delivery capacity.

Across our service lines we continue to focus on productivity improvement activities, as well as continuing to modernise our benefit services through our digital transformation and Service Modernisation programmes, which mean an increasing number of claims can now be made online and through self-service. The Department strategy is to continue our modernisation programme, enable our people to focus on supporting more vulnerable customers who are unable to self-serve or need additional support.

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