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Departmental Recruitment

Volume 505: debated on Friday 5 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much his Department and its agencies spent on recruitment consultants in the last 12 months. (315292)

The majority of permanent recruitment is managed internally by the Ministry's HR function. For specialist or senior vacancies, it is sometimes necessary, however, to use recruitment consultants to access a wider pool of talent.

The Ministry's accounting systems do not separately identify expenditure on recruitment consultants. Payments to recruitment consultants are recorded within the wider categories of recruitment expenditure. To specifically identify expenditure on recruitment consultants would involve the disproportionate cost of examining a large number of invoices held locally across the business.

Additionally, recruitment consultants are usually involved in the continuing supply of temporary and contract staff where the fee paid represents the amount paid directly to the contractor, plus the agency's management fee which includes their charge for recruiting the contractor. The management fee element can vary depending on the terms negotiated for individual contracts. Fees to recruitment consultants for the continuing supply of contract and agency staff can only be distinguished from fees for specific recruitment campaigns at a disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much his Department and its agencies have spent on font licensing in the last three years. (315331)

Payments by the Ministry of Justice for software application licences, for example for Microsoft Windows, include an amount in respect of core fonts used within the application. Software publishers license fonts from foundries and are responsible for passing on the royalty to the foundries from the licence fee. The element of the total licence amount that relates to fonts is not identifiable to the Ministry of Justice as the purchaser of the software application licence.

The Ministry of Justice does, however, make some payments directly in respect of the licence of specialised fonts used in publications. The amounts are not separately identified in accounting records. Payments are normally made via the Government Procurement Card and could be identified only at disproportionate cost by examining thousands of statements held locally around the business.

However, we are aware that £437 has been paid in respect of five font licences in the 2009-10 year to date by the Ministry's central design team which is responsible for group wide publications.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many job vacancies in his Department and its agencies were filled through external recruitment in the last 12 months. (315332)

For the period 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2009 the Ministry of Justice and its agencies, including the National Offender Management Service, filled a total of 4,175 job vacancies through external recruitment. The vacancies advertised were for permanent as well as fixed-term posts.

The Ministry recruits in line with the Civil Service Commissioners' recruitment principles and is committed to recruitment on merit through fair and open competition.