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Cover of report

Child Support Agency Client Funds Account 2002-2003

“I have had to qualify this account yet again because maintenance assessments are still subject to high levels of error. I therefore welcome the implementation earlier this year of the Agency’s reform programme with its new, simplified methodology for calculating maintenance assessments.

The Agency believes that this will result in more accurate assessments and provide other associated benefits. The new programme has been operating for only four months and it is too early for me to assess the success of the reforms. I intend to consider their impact in my audit of the 2003-04 account.”

Published:
16 Jul 2003
Cover of report

Child Support Agency Client Funds Account 2003-2004

“Once again I have had to qualify this account because of the high levels of historic error in maintenance assessments that completion of the Child Support Agency’s reforms are intended to remove. The operation of the new arrangements with their simplified methodology for calculating maintenance assessments has so far been disappointing. In 2003-2004, the first year of operation of the reform programme, the accuracy of maintenance assessments has not matched performance levels under the old scheme.

“I intend to report later on what the Agency is doing to achieve its agreed targets and to provide a faster and improved service to all parties and to complete the Reform programme.”

Published:
22 Jul 2004
Report cover showing a mother and child painting on the table

Child Support Agency – implementation of the child support reforms

“The Child Support reforms were a final but, in the event, unsuccessful attempt to deliver the policy behind the creation of Child Support Agency in 1993. While they have benefited a number of the poorest parents and children, overall they have not achieved value for money and have not achieved what they were designed to do.

“These problems will have caused genuine hardship and distress to many parents and their children. From design to delivery and operation, the programme to reform the Agency has been beset with problems which the Department for Work and Pensions, the Agency and its IT supplier EDS, have struggled to deal with.

“The Agency’s new Operational Improvement Plan is a significant step towards addressing these difficulties and is showing signs of improving the Agency’s performance, but, given the scale of the problems, there will be no quick fix.”

Published:
30 Jun 2006
Two pensioners walking hand in hand

Confirmed impacts: Improving data quality and records retention of the Principal Civil Service Pension Scheme

This impacts case study shows how our identification of data and management weaknesses was pivotal in leading to the implementation of actions to address them.

It is one example of financial or non-financial benefits realised in 2014 as a result of our involvement, all of which are set out in our interactive PDF.

Published:
15 Oct 2015
Woman reading with children in the background

Confirmed impacts: Learning from the experience of welfare reform

This impacts case study shows how DWP has responded to our reviews of several welfare reform programmes, including by improving financial controls, contract management, and the way it manages its portfolio of change programmes.

It is one example of financial or non-financial benefits realised in 2014 as a result of our involvement, all of which are set out in our interactive PDF.

Published:
14 Oct 2015
Report cover showing a crossword

Dealing with the complexity of the benefits system

“The complexity of the benefits system is one of the most important issues affecting the performance of the Department for Work and Pensions. There is a balance to be struck between a system which is detailed enough to respond to needs and yet straightforward enough to be run efficiently, communicating clearly with customers and minimising error. This balance has not yet been reached. It is not for me to direct specific changes but I recommend that the Department builds on current work to tackle the problem both in the short and long term.”

Published:
18 Nov 2005