No 10 reaffirms support for Rees-Mogg’s WFH crackdown

No 10 reaffirms support for Rees-Mogg’s WFH crackdown

No 10 has once again publicly backed government efficiency minister Jacob Rees-Mogg’s plans to crackdown on “work from home” in Whitehall.

Rees-Mogg, who also serves as minister for Brexit opportunities, wrote to all secretaries of state on 13 April to demand they communicate a “clear message” to civil servants about cracking down on work from home (WFH) culture.

Rees-Mogg also forwarded a league table of civil service office attendance from the week beginning on 4 April. The figures showed that across some departments the average of in-office staff was below one-third on a typical day.

He also stressed that he would be visiting departments with higher WFH figures in order to “ensure we are making efficient use of the central London estate”.

The prime minister’s official spokesperson told journalists this afternoon: “Certainly the Prime Minister for his part supports this drive to return to pre-pandemic levels of civil servants in the office.” 

The Times has alleged that culture secretary Nadine Dorries slammed the plans as “Dickensian” in a recent Cabinet meeting.

The newspaper claims Dorries argued: “There’s a whiff of something Dickensian about it. Why are we measuring bodies behind desks? Why aren’t we measuring productivity?”