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Frequently asked questions

Answers to some common questions about the Efficiency and Relocation Support Programme.
What is the Efficiency and Relocation Support Programme (ERSP)?
The ERSP was devised by the Cabinet Office in conjunction with key national and regional stakeholders to facilitate a common approach to handling the people implications of the Gershon and Lyons Reviews. It provides departments with a common framework on which to base activities around redeployment of civil servants to maximise opportunities within the Civil Service and the wider public sector. In addition, it provides information, advice and assistance with career training to ensure that retraining opportunities are communicated to affected staff at all levels within departments.
What is the aim of the ERSP?
The key aim of the support programme is to ensure that every effort is made to minimise compulsory redundancies.
Is the Cabinet Office responsible for redeploying me?
No. Departments will have their own redeployment processes in place in support of the principles set out in the ERSP. However, the Cabinet Office has put in place CSVacs to give surplus staff access to civil service wide vacancies (see CSVacs in People issues). All individual queries should be directed to your departmental Human Resource section.
How do I know if I am at risk (surplus)?
It is for departments to inform their employees whether they are surplus to business requirements. Individuals should contact their departmental Human Resource team to seek clarity where necessary.
Is there a standard application form that surplus employees can use when applying for vacancies within other government departments?
Some departments have signed up to using a standard application form for staff at risk. Please refer to the job advertisement which will set out the application process. It will also indicate whether this form should be used for that particular vacancy.
I have been a civil servant for many years - Why do I have to go through an application process to get another job?
Department's need to retain the flexibility to recruit employees who have the necessary skills and experience to deliver their services effectively and to take forward their reform agendas. As a result, recruitment processes are put in place to meet their business need
Why are departments still advertising vacancies when there are so many staff at risk?
It is essential that departments are able to obtain the necessary skills to deliver better public services therefore, recruitment must continue. However, processes are in place to both nationally and regionally to support staff at risk to maximise redeployment activities.
Can surplus employees attend the regional Human Resource Forums?
No. This forum provides an opportunity for departmental Human Resource colleagues to network, broker job opportunities and share good practice etc. The learning from these forums helps Departments to support affected staff more effectively.
What is CSVacs?
JobCentre Plus in conjunction with the Cabinet Office have established a vacancy handling process (CSVacs) to give employees at risk of losing their jobs access to civil service wide vacancies. Whilst the vacancies are on CSVacs they cannot be accessed by civil servants who are not at risk or external candidates.
How do surplus employees access CSvacs (vacancy handling database)?
To obtain access contact your departmental Human Resource team.
Can surplus employees receive promotion opportunities as part of ERSP?
No. The ERSP has been set up to facilitate a corporate approach to redeployment of surplus employees across the Civil Service to minimise compulsory redundancies and enable those at risk to be given available opportunities to acquire a suitable post. It does not make provision for progression/promotion opportunities.