Save money...work at home, says Telewest

Councils told how to hoard cash


Local government workers should be allowed to work from home if the public sector is to realise efficiency savings outlined by last year's treasury-backed Gershon Review.

Not only would teleworking increase staff productivity and help improve chances to hang on to key workers and attract new staff, it could also lead to councils reducing costly overheads such as maintaining office space.

So says a survey by Telewest Business, which quizzed 100 senior council officials on how to cut increase staff productivity to help save £6.5b by 2007-2008 identified by the Gershon Review.

The introduction of e-government is seen as one way the public sector can halt spiralling costs. But the way it manages its own staff is also seen as critical.

"Local council priorities have shifted to the next wave of e-government with Gershon, from getting public services online to waking up to how efficiency gains can be made across the entire organisation," said Christopher Small, a director at Telewest Business.

"Our survey found that 65 per cent of local councils are feeling under increasing pressure to reduce office space in the next few years. When you couple this with the pressure to increase staff productivity and find people with the right skills, embracing new communications technologies could be the key to making sure councils gain greater efficiencies without cutting staff or public services."

Telewest described as "alarming" findings that only a limited number of councils employed teleworking to reduce overheads. ®


Other stories you might like

  • It's primed and full of fuel, the James Webb Space Telescope is ready to be packed up prior to launch

    Fingers crossed the telescope will finally take to space on 22 December

    Engineers have finished pumping the James Webb Space Telescope with fuel, and are now preparing to carefully place the folded instrument inside the top of a rocket, expected to blast off later this month.

    “Propellant tanks were filled separately with 79.5 [liters] of dinitrogen tetroxide oxidiser and 159 [liters of] hydrazine,” the European Space Agency confirmed on Monday. “Oxidiser improves the burn efficiency of the hydrazine fuel.” The fuelling process took ten days and finished on 3 December.

    All eyes are on the JWST as it enters the last leg of its journey to space; astronomers have been waiting for this moment since development for the world’s largest space telescope began in 1996.

    Continue reading
  • China to upgrade mainstream RISC-V chips every six months

    Home-baked silicon is the way forward

    China is gut punching Moore's Law and the roughly one-year cadence for major chip releases adopted by the Intel, AMD, Nvidia and others.

    The government-backed Chinese Academy of Sciences, which is developing open-source RISC-V performance processor, says it will release major design upgrades every six months. CAS is hoping that the accelerated release of chip designs will build up momentum and support for its open-source project.

    RISC-V is based on an open-source instruction architecture, and is royalty free, meaning companies can adopt designs without paying licensing fees.

    Continue reading
  • The SEC is investigating whistleblower claims that Tesla was reckless as its solar panels go up in smoke

    Tens of thousands of homeowners and hundreds of businesses were at risk, lawsuit claims

    The Securities and Exchange Commission has launched an investigation into whether Tesla failed to tell investors and customers about the fire risks of its faulty solar panels.

    Whistleblower and ex-employee, Steven Henkes, accused the company of flouting safety issues in a complaint with the SEC in 2019. He filed a freedom of information request to regulators and asked to see records relating to the case in September, earlier this year. An SEC official declined to hand over documents, and confirmed its probe into the company is still in progress.

    “We have confirmed with Division of Enforcement staff that the investigation from which you seek records is still active and ongoing," a letter from the SEC said in a reply to Henkes’ request, according to Reuters. Active SEC complaints and investigations are typically confidential. “The SEC does not comment on the existence or nonexistence of a possible investigation,” a spokesperson from the regulatory agency told The Register.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021