Austin Macauley 21 September 2015

Poll exposes scale of ‘inefficient’ public sector meetings culture

Almost two-thirds of public sector workers spend time in ‘inefficient and unproductive’ meetings every week, according to a survey.

YouGov found 46% of staff attend meetings that start late or overrun and 48% experience delays due to IT issues. More than a third admitted they check social media and emails while in meetings.

However, outsourcing provider arvato, which commissioned the poll, said the results were largely in line with the private sector.

Debra Maxwell, chief executive of arvato for the UK and Ireland, said: ‘While these research findings challenge the wide spread assumption that the public sector is considerably less efficient than the private sector, the statistics are still a cause for concern.

‘The public sector is under significant pressure to make huge savings while still delivering the same, if not a better level of service. For that reason, organisations can't afford to waste precious employee time due to a lax meeting culture.

‘Organisations need to re-evaluate the way they hold meetings - for example sticking to agendas, or allowing people to dial in rather than making them travel long distances for meetings. These small things could make a big impact on overall productivity in the public sector.’

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