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Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has welcomed a report from the Westminster Sustainable Business Forum which says taxpayers could save £15 billion a year in office costs if there was more home working by employees.

In the foreword Conservative MP Matthew Hancock, who chaired the inquiry says:

This report shows the sheer scale of savings available to local government from better use of their property. Of the £370 billion of property owned by government and costing that managing property effectively can reduce the space needed by 30%, with potential savings in running costs of up to £7 billion a year. For example, Birmingham City used by 40% while delivering over £100 million in savings.lower costs, lower carbon emissions, and better services.

After six months of studying how some of the very best councils have changed the way they work, we have brought together some clear examples of how changes can be made. Where councils have brought together different local public services, managed space not only cost reductions but that better services were provided. Of course there are taken to unlock these improvements.

The report also calls for shared, open plan, office space which it says increases productivity.

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