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Departmental Savings

Volume 174: debated on Tuesday 12 June 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what mechanisms exist in his Department for identifying and tracking value-for-money savings in its operations;(2) what were the value-for-money savings in his Department's operations identified by internal audit and internal efficiency arrangements and by external audit and by management consultants retained by his Department between 1983–84 and 1988–89; and what is the amount of those savings fulfilled to date.

[holding answer 5 June 1990]: The Department constantly monitors expenditure on its administration to ensure that value for money is achieved. To this end, the Department makes use of a range of formal and informal mechanisms including surveys, policy reviews, organisation and methods studies, staffing reviews and other monitoring arrangements. The improvements resulting from all such inquiries and studies are taken into account in the setting of annual budgets and internal targets. Audit arrangements are concerned principally with securing adequate financial controls, but wherever audit work has shown opportunities for securing value-for-money savings the relevant recommendations have been implemented. The results are not collected centrally within the Department.