Strategic centre of government
The strategic 'centre of government' is primarily Cabinet Office and HM Treasury. It needs to play a lead role in transforming public services to reduce costs and improve outcomes. Key areas of focus for the centre need to include management of major projects, capability and workforce reform, shared services, digital transformation, and ensuring effective oversight and accountability.
Changing the way government works is not easy. New skills are needed, particularly business planning, commercial, digital and project management. There must be the right incentives and culture to support innovation and continuous improvement. Public sector organisations have to work together in a more integrated way and with more effective leadership from the centre. Departments also have to improve their business planning, monitor performance better and share lessons.
NAO publications: Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General: Whole of Government Accounts 2015-16 (July 2017); and The centre of government: an update (Mar 2015)