The report from Policy Exchange says that the amount of money government departments spend on external contractors has risen significantly in recent years, from £610m in 2011/2012 to £1bn in 2014/2015, with the ministry of justice, energy department and home office employing more than 10,400 off-payroll staff combined.
Policy Exchange suggests that putting contract workers on departmental payrolls will incentivise departments to be less wasteful in their spending.
Damian Hind, the report’s author, said: “After a couple of years of restraint, expenditure on consultants and agency staff has ballooned again. While contractors clearly fulfil an important role in government their persistent use reflects the serious flaws in the civil service human resources system.
“Departments don’t appear to have a proper handle on the use of outside consultants and agency staff,” he added.