Home Office employees sign up to agreement with ministers to improve the department’s performance

Home Office ministers and officials have formed an unprecedented agreement to “exude pace and passion” as they work to improve performance at the beleaguered department.

A one-page ‘compact’ between civil servants and ministers pins down their responsibilities.

It says the heads of operational services are responsible for “increasingly answering externally for operational matters”.

Officials’ responsibilities include making sure that “accountabilities are clear, always knowing which individual is responsible for which decision and area of work and tackling weak performance”.

Home secretary John Reid has said he would take two-and-a-half years to turn around the department, which he previously declared not “fit for purpose”.

Senior civil servants’ union, the FDA, said it had not been consulted on the agreement.

The compact is posted on the Home Office website, along with an outline of changes made at the department since July 2006.

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