Skip to main content

Departmental Consultants

Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many people were employed by his Department as consultants in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (256904)

In keeping with good procurement practice most consultancy engagements placed by DCSF are based on a requirement for the delivery of outcomes or outputs, and not for the number of people employed. Our management information system reflects this and records the numbers and values of contracts or engagements, rather than individual consultants. We are, therefore, unable to answer the question in the way it has been asked. However, the total number of live consultancy engagements in DCSF at the end of November 2008 was 329 and at the end of November 2007 was 202. The equivalent figure for the Department for Education and Skills at the end of November 2006 was 146. Figures were not kept centrally for previous years. The increase partly reflects the need for additional input from external experts on our delivery programmes (such as academies and contact point) and partly better recording as new systems we introduced in 2006-07 bedded in.