Corporate Business Plan 2023/24
The full House of Commons Corporate Business Plan is available in PDF format:
House of Commons Corporate Business Plan 2023/24 (PDF)
Summary of key objectives
1. On 1 April 2023 we launched a new strategy for the House of Commons Administration. Our purpose is to support parliamentary democracy by delivering excellent services to the UK Parliament. The strategy sets out nine strategic priorities that will guide our work over the next four years. We all contribute to delivery of each strategic priority through the work we do every day, living our values of collaborative, courageous, inclusive and trusted.
2. This business plan provides an overview of the key objectives that we will deliver in the coming year to improve our services.
Support the work of the Chamber and committees
3. Parliament has a unique role in our national life, enacting laws, scrutinising the Government, and holding debates on the issues that really matter to people. The Chamber and committees are at the heart of what we do and remain our top priority.
4. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Connected Chamber – Develop a programme of activity, which improves awareness of and connection with the work of the House of Commons Chamber and Westminster Hall, taking a strategic and collaborative approach to tackling shared challenges across House teams.
- Broadcasting Unit operating model – Embed the transition of the audio-visual programme into a new operating model, providing a self-sustaining, continuous broadcasting capability.
- Chamber and committee digital systems – Make improvements to core procedural systems and web publishing for legislation, committees and MemberHub.
- Open data platform – Develop an authoritative set of linked procedural data and research through an integrated data platform. Implement services from the data platform to support scrutiny by Members, including an improved parliamentary search tool.
Provide excellent services to Members
5. Members of Parliament (MPs) are elected to represent the views and concerns of their constituents in the House of Commons. Their duties include voting on legislation, taking part in debates, asking questions of Government, and constituency casework. Many are also members of a committee, a government minister or opposition spokesperson. Every MP has a different set of responsibilities and priorities and is free to choose how best to represent their constituents. We are committed to providing excellent services that support all Members and their staff throughout their time in Parliament.
6. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Supporting Members and their staff – Understand what services and support Members would like us to develop through a survey of Member services. Ensure that the support available to Members’ staff enables them to fulfil their key role within the parliamentary community through implementation of agreed recommendations of the Speaker’s Conference.
- General Election planning – Ensure that we are ready to deliver what both incoming and outgoing Members need when the next election is held.
Support our people to thrive
7. Making Parliament happen requires people with a wide range of skills and experience. In a highly competitive recruitment market, we have been developing new ways to attract good quality and diverse candidates, increasing awareness of roles on offer, and bringing to life what it is like to work here. We are focused on developing our talented people and ensuring that we promote an inclusive culture, reinforcing the standards of behaviour expected of everyone in the parliamentary community.
8. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Inclusion and diversity strategy – Deliver the first year of our new inclusion and diversity strategy, focusing on three priorities: fostering an inclusive environment, improving accessibility, and decreasing the ethnicity pay gap.
- Estate-based community – Understand and improve the workplace experience for frontline, estate-based, colleagues, focusing on spaces, protected time for development, and digital access.
- ICGS – Make further improvements to the efficiency and effectiveness of the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme.
- HR and payroll replacement – Implement modern, flexible HR technology to empower our people and organisation. Transform employee attraction, engagement, and development through self-service and centralised data.
Achieve value for money
9. We have a responsibility to ensure that our services are delivered in the most efficient and effective way, always recognising that we are spending public money. In November 2022, we published the Independent Review of Financial Management, conducted by Lord Morse. Strengthening the focus on value for money and embedding this within our culture is an underlying theme throughout the report and we are strongly committed to achieving this.
10. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Independent review of financial management – Foster a culture where value for money is appropriately prioritised, and delivering services efficiently is embedded, permanent practice. Strengthen forecasting and ensure teams operate within their 2% budget limit increases.
- Finance system renewal – Implement a modern, fit for purpose finance system that can evolve as operations and services change over time. Improve the financial management of the organisation by having the data, systems, and processes available for finance to assure good management and put value at the heart of decision-making.
- Estates teams operational review – Complete an operational review of our estates teams to improve ways of working and the delivery of services to Parliament.
Engage and inform the public
11. We increase access to, and understanding of, the House of Commons in a wide range of ways, including parliament.tv, Hansard, interparliamentary relations, the parliamentary website and social media. We also welcome visitors onto the estate to learn more about how the UK Parliament works. Following the successful delivery of our Elizabeth Tower project, we are once again able to welcome visitors to the refurbished tower. We have reviewed the experience of visitors to Parliament and will ensure that our visitor access is managed efficiently and safely. Looking to future changes to the estate resulting from our works projects and R&R, we are developing proposals to ensure that we can continue our excellent education provision during periods when parts of the estate become inaccessible.
12. Key objective for 2023/24:
- Education service – secure the long-term provision of the education service.
Sustain and improve our working environment
13. There are dozens of major projects underway to repair and restore key buildings across the parliamentary estate, to improve and repair key services and keep the estate running for the 3,000+ people on site each day. All this work, involving colleagues in the Commons, Lords and bicameral teams, is about supporting the continued business of Parliament, by making the estate a safe, resilient, and fit for purpose environment. At the heart of the Parliamentary estate is the Palace of Westminster. The Palace needs wholesale restoration to preserve it for future generations.
14. Key objective for 2023/24:
- Restoration and renewal – Enable Members to make an informed decision on the level of ambition for restoration and how the work will be delivered.
- Norman Shaw North – Repair a Grade 1 listed building, providing a safe office environment for Members, their staff and users of the estate along with improved building resilience, security, accessibility and sustainability.
- Lift refurbishment – Upgrade components to ensure that lifts remain functional.
- Heritage storage facility – Ensure that our heritage collections survive for future generations, through the provision of dedicated storage facilities.
Keep the parliamentary community safe
15. We are committed to ensuring the safety and security of everyone who works on the parliamentary estate. We are recruiting a new Director of Parliamentary Safety who will provide strategic leadership of safety across Parliament. We have made significant progress implementing a layered security model for the Parliamentary estate, ensuring that enhanced physical measures complement our security and police operations. The security of Members away from the parliamentary estate will continue to be one of our top priorities for the coming year.
16. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Safety transformation – Develop and initiate a safety culture transformation programme, bringing together and actively managing all safety improvement initiatives. Develop mechanisms that support and further strengthen the active engagement of all senior leaders in safety matters. Develop and implement redesigned safety functions. Clarify the distinct accountabilities and responsibilities of corporate and operational safety teams.
- Member security – Develop a regional engagement capability for Members’ security to develop local relationships with MPs, their constituency staff, and local police, and to inform the risk assessment process. Transfer the management of the Member security budget from IPSA to PSD to provide a more responsive approach, proportionate to the risks faced by MPs in their homes and constituency offices.
- Emergency services network – Implement a replacement secure, encrypted, voice and data communication system.
Provide reliable digital services
17. Last year we published a new Digital Strategy for Parliament. The strategy sets out how we will deliver reliable digital services that are secure, robust, and available. We continue to deliver Transforming Digital – a Parliament-wide programme that will fundamentally change the way Parliament works with Digital. The vision is to ‘Unlock Parliament’s Potential’ by improving customer satisfaction, establishing a transformative digital operating model, replacing legacy technology, and growing the digital skills and capabilities of everyone in Parliament.
18. Key objectives for 2023/24:
- Transforming Digital – More cost effective and reliable delivery of digital services. More effective and faster decision-making about investment in technology and digital services.
- Cyber security – Ensure that Parliament has both the ability to deter and protect against cyber-attacks, and the ability to detect, contain, mitigate the effects of, and recover from, cyber-attacks.
- Wi-fi service – Deliver an optimised, reliable, and secure parliamentary network and wi-fi service for the parliamentary estate.
Treat our data and information as a vital asset
19. One of our priority areas in implementation of the Independent Review of Financial Management is the need for good quality management, financial and performance information. Many of the objectives set out in this plan aim to fulfil this need and make better use of data. Our new intranet (ParliNet) goes live in September, making it easier for everyone in Parliament to find clear, up-to-date, and relevant information.
20. Key objective for 2023/24:
- Intranet replacement – Complete the creation of an intranet that everyone goes to for trusted, timely, relevant content which enables people to work effectively.