7th July, 2003.
Dr. Donal DeBuitleir,
Civil Service Performance Verification Group,
Room 810 Lansdowne House,
I refer to your letter of 23rd June requesting submission of the Central Statistics Office action
plan under Sustaining Progress. Please find enclosed the completed template document.
I wish to point out that the CSO has included two additional themes in our submission:
Delivering a Fair and Inclusive Society and Public Service Pensions. These refer to specific
commitments relating to the CSO in the Sustaining Progress Agreement. Chapter Five
commits the CSO to specific actions with regard to poverty and social inclusion; while
section 17 of the Agreement commits the CSO to provide information on pensions.
The CSO has implemented a number of modernisation programmes, over recent years, which
have significantly improved the organisational capabilities of the Office. Among these are:-
The CSO has adopted a business-driven Project Management methodology for all major
projects. The use of Project Management methodologies has meant that all large projects are
systematically planned and monitored. The Project Office reports on the overall progress of
all projects to every meeting of the Senior Management Committee (SMC or MAC).
Another key development over the last number of years was the commencement of
implementation of the Office's IT Strategy. The key objective of the strategy is the
migration of all the CSO's survey systems to a client-server environment which will take
advantage of the latest technologies for processing data and publishing statistics and which
will position the CSO to take advantage of the e-Government
initiatives, as they come on stream.
The embedding of the Strategic Management Initiative into the management of the Office has
improved effectiveness particularly through the process of formulating strategy statements,
and divisional and local business plans in which all staff have the opportunity of becoming
involved. The introduction of PMDS and the implementation of Senior and Middle
Management Development Programmes have also assisted in developing staff and delivering
I enclose a copy of the CS QAG report on the CSO (July 2002) which
indicates their very positive views of the progress made during the
course of the PPF period.
Key areas of modernisation:-
We are implementing a number of key strategic actions to underpin the future capability of
the CSO. In particular I expect the achievement of the following objectives will further
enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the Office:-
implementation of the Office's IT Strategy
further development of eGovernment and IT solutions in the collection and
dissemination of data
the greater use of merit based competitive promotions
implementation of the Management Information Framework and the
installation of enhanced financial management systems
implementation of new work processes and structures, where necessary advancing the
statistical potential of administrative records across
public Departments, to meet the growing demand for statistics and to support good
During the lifetime of the Sustaining Progress Agreement the CSO will aim to achieve all the
commitments outlined in the attached draft. I believe the commitments are in line with, and
will advance, our high level goals. The commitments are challenging and I am confident that,
as in the past, the CSO will meet the challenges successfully.