31 March 2008 | Jake Kanter
The OGC has urged public sector bodies to minimise the space their staff use to make efficiency savings.
Following a report by property performance firm IPD Occupiers, "government workspace standards" will become mandatory from tomorrow (1 April). They will encourage working areas to be limited to 10 to 12 metres squared per person both in existing offices and in new buildings.
The review said a sixth of government offices use 24 metres squared of space per person and advised this should be reduced to cut costs.
The OGC hopes this will save £1.25 billion a year, from leasing or selling space freed up by reductions, and improve sustainability and working conditions for public sector staff. "Property champions" will work with their departments to help introduce the scheme.
Nigel Smith, chief executive of the OGC, said in a statement: "Improved use of workspace is the most effective way of achieving significant efficiency savings from the government's office property portfolio."
The Property Benchmarking Service will become compulsory this month, allowing departments to measure the efficiency of facilities against private sector best practice.