E-envoy Andrew Pinder has downplayed his earlier comments that e-government savings could make a fifth of civil servants redundant.
Last month, Pinder told delegates at the Government Leaders' Conference in Seattle that staff savings of 20 per cent could be achieved over ten years. "You can make substantial savings in the delivery of some services where there are civil servants doing routine tasks," he said.
He said that 40 per cent of non-frontline public sector employees could be replaced if "high levels of take-up" of online services were achieved.
But rather than cut jobs as benefit and council tax systems go online, Pinder told MPs on the Public Accounts Committee on Monday that savings would be redirected to more frontline services such as nursing and education.
"Often what happens is when efficiencies are made in putting government services online, people are deployed elsewhere," Pinder said. But he admitted that the government needed to look at "the consequences of improvements and efficiencies".
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