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Treasury recruitment difficulties leads to planned reduction in working hours


Government Treasury bosses are telling the Chancellor, Gordon Brown, that working hours in the government department need to be cut if recruitment isn't to suffer further.

Gordon Brown, known as something of a workaholic himself, enjoys breakfast meetings and has been known to telephone government colleagues and civil servants in the early hours of the morning to discuss Treasury matters and forthcoming speeches.

The Treasury has formed a task force to reduce working hours after evidence was presented that showed that the hours demanded of work in the department was a turn-off to potential recruits. The department is known to be looking for staff with private sector backgrounds.

Information submitted to the Treasury select committee's inquiry into efficiency in the department indicates that between January and March 1999, 3% of staff worked in excess of 20 hours over their contracted time; 6% worked over 16 hours, 13% more than 11 hours and 31% more than six hours.

In reporting the story, The Guardian newspaper also adds details of a German survey which shows that British managers work hours shorter than only German managers.


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