Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Questions (83)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

83. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the extent to which revised rostering of working hours throughout the public service has managed to reduce costs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23931/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Public)

The provisions set out in the Haddington Road Agreement will help to deliver an unprecedented increase in productivity across the Public Service, through the provision of almost 15 million additional working hours annually and a range of other efficiency and reform measures. While the application of these additional hours varies by sector, depending on local patterns in the demand for services and the scale of ongoing reductions in staff numbers, the additional hours will help to deliver long term and sustainable increases in productivity, while also helping public service management to maintain and indeed improve service delivery against the backdrop of decreasing staff numbers. The potential benefits of the additional hours are significant. The additional hours will deliver approximately €430 million, a significant proportion of the €1 billion savings target. These cash savings will be delivered through reducing the requirement for overtime and agency payments; facilitate reductions in staff numbers and the associated annual paybill cost over the course of the Agreement; and also allow for amendments to the Supervision and Substitution payments in the Education sector.

It is essential that public service management continually evaluate new and innovative ways for utlilising the additional hours, including revised rostering arrangements, to ensure that the full potential of this agreement is realised.