Written answers

Wednesday, 12 June 2024

Department of Finance

Flexible Work Practices

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Roscommon-Galway, Independent)
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62. To ask the Minister for Finance if his Department and each body and agency under the remit of his Department has achieved the Government-mandated public sector remote working target of 20%; when this was achieved in each instance; the current percentage of staff working remotely; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25687/24]

Photo of Michael McGrathMichael McGrath (Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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I wish to inform the Deputy that my Department has achieved the Government mandated public sector remote working target of 20%, in line with Government commitments. My Department launched its Blended Working Policy on 1st July 2022, which was developed in line with the key principles and parameters of the Civil Service Blended Working Policy Framework. However, blended and remote working has been in operation in my Department since 15 March 2020. Remote working is available for two or three days a week, this is managed locally within business units and is subject to business needs. Blended working is available to the majority of staff, with the exception of a small number in roles that are customer facing, where office attendance is necessary to undertake the duties of the role. These roles account for approximately 5% of all staff. At present, approximately 95% of staff within the Department choose to work remotely.

The bodies under the aegis of my Department have advised as follows:

The Central Bank remains committed to having a hybrid working model in place that provides two-way flexibility to both employees and the organisation. Since July 2022, its hybrid working model has allowed the majority of roles (+90% of approximately 2,000 employees) to choose to work from home up to 50% of their working days each month, if the requirements of the role allow. There are a minority of roles (<10%) that are required to work onsite more frequently than 50% on the basis that core aspects of their role can only be delivered onsite. Employees can also choose to work onsite more than 50% of their working days if it is their preference to do so. The Central Bank assigns staff to the Investor Compensation Company DAC.

The Credit Review Office achieved the 20% remote working target in March 2020. 100% of staff work remotely, typically working 2 days in the office, 3 days from home.

The majority of Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman’s staff have access to remote working arrangements whereby they can work remotely up to 3 days per week. At least 20% of staff have been working from home since 2021. Currently 97% of staff utilise the remote working option.

In relation to the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council, the 20% remote working target has been achieved since March 2020. 100% of staff avail of a hybrid working arrangement.

Under the hybrid working policy of the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA), all employees are eligible to work from home up to 3 days per week, subject to business requirements. The mandated public sector remote working target of 20% has been achieved since April 2022. The NTMA assigns staff to Home Building Finance Ireland, the National Asset Management Agency and the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland.

The Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General has a remote working policy in place since 2015 to meet the target of 20%. Remote working is availed of by 97% of staff.

From September 2022, the Office of the Revenue Commissioners achieved the 20% remote working target. Currently 80% of staff work remotely.

The Tax Appeals Commission introduced blended working arrangements for all staff in September 2022, as mandated by Government, achieving a remote working target of 60%. This is still the case in 2024. 100% of staff avail of remote working arrangements.


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