Preventing Fraud in Contracted Employment Programmes: Department for Work and Pensions
HC 90, Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General, Session 2012-13
- National Audit Office (NAO)
- TSO (The Stationery Office)
The introduction of the Work Programme in June 2011 largely addressed the weaknesses in previous programmes that led to the risk of fraud by providers being understated. 'Preventing Fraud in Contracted Employment Programmes: Department for Work Pensions (HC 90)' assesses how some risks still remain because not every control applies to every programme, particularly to smaller ones.
The Department does not currently obtain all relevant copies of providers' internal audit reports and, in the case of the company 'A4e', did not receive the paper sent to the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee which highlighted a possible systematic failure to mitigate the risk of fraudulent and irregular activity .
More than half of fraud allegations since 2006, valued at £773,000, have been in respect of New Deal programmes which ended in 2011. Schemes such as the Flexible New Deal and the Work Programme that replaced the New Deal have been designed with measurable and verifiable outcomes to minimise the risk of fraud.
In the case of the £8 million programme providing mandatory work activity, there are still no independent checks with employers to verify whether unemployed claimants have actually been placed with them for work.
Recommendations include that the Department make the most of the fraud risk knowledge it possesses and share it more effectively; and that users' complaints be used to assess the quality of service providers.
|Format||Paperback||Published||16 May 2012|
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