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Olympic Games 2012

Volume 494: debated on Wednesday 24 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many full-time equivalent members of staff in (a) his Department and (b) its associated public bodies are working on projects relating to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games; how many of them are working on (i) project management, (ii) legacy planning, (iii) project oversight and (iv) financial oversight; and what plans he has for future staffing levels in each case. (279814)

I have been asked to reply.

The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games are a key priority across Government. The Government Olympic Executive (GOE) was set up within the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to oversee the delivery of Government objectives for the Games.

As of 15 June, the GOE consisted of 93.7 full-time equivalent (FTE) staff. Of this total, no members of staff are working in roles defined as project management roles, 21.5 are working in roles mainly relating to legacy planning, 14 on roles mainly relating to project oversight, and six on roles mainly relating to financial control/oversight. The remainder of staff work mainly on programme assurance and risk management, staging, strategic communications and parliamentary matters.

In terms of further specific posts relating to Olympic projects within DCMS, 7.5 FTE staff are employed on Olympic Programme Management, the Cultural Olympiad and in the Press Office. Of these, approximately 3.4 FTE are in roles relating to project management and approximately 1.1 FTE in roles relating to project oversight. The purpose of these posts is to manage the wider DCMS interests in relation to staging the Games such as elite sport, sport participation, tourism and culture. The remaining three FTE staff are full time press officers.

As of 31 May 2009, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) employed 245 members of staff. This consists of permanent staff, fixed term contract staff, and secondments. Contained within the fixed term contract staff category there are a number of graduates that have been recruited for a 10 month placement as part of the ODA’s graduate placement scheme.

Of the 245 members of staff employed by the ODA, 136 are currently working in project management roles across a number of ODA teams.

It is not possible to provide a breakdown of those staff that are exclusively working on legacy planning roles as every project within the programme is considered with legacy in mind ensuring that legacy requirements are incorporated into design briefs, specifications and business plans. This approach is designed to ensure that the London 2012 Games will be the catalyst for the regeneration of one of the most underdeveloped areas of the UK.

The ODA currently has nine members of staff with overall project oversight responsibilities, and 19 employees who work closely with its Delivery Partner on the financial oversight of the programme. In addition the ODA has engaged Ernst and Young to provide an Internal Audit service.

The ODA expect overall staffing levels within the organisation to reduce over time as construction progresses on the big five venues for the London 2012 Games although in the transportation area staffing levels will increase as we move closer to Games operations.

Information relating to DCMS’s other non-departmental public bodies who are working on projects relating to the London 2012 Olympics could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Future staffing levels in the GOE will remain under review, within the overall budgetary settlement agreed with HM Treasury.