Ridding ourselves of red tape

14 April 2011
The modern world of work is peppered with minor irritations and inconveniences. I’m sure everybody reading this could point to at least one aspect of your job where illogical or inefficient rules slow you down or stop you doing something for the better. Many of these are preventative ‘just in case’ measures, so the organisation doesn’t end up with metaphorical egg on its face (or much worse). The government, which is often the source of so many of these vexations, wants to change at least some of this. It has set up a “Red Tape Challenge”, to get rid of unnecessary regulations. It is asking for feedback on what to do about various rules. Scrap them? Simplify them? Leave them as they are? Views are being sought on commercial law, including contract regulations and rules on late payment to suppliers. After recommendations have been collated, ministers will have just three months to decide what to follow and what to follow, and what to ignore. EU procurement rules – undoubtedly much to the chagrin of public sector buyers – are not yet on the agenda. The site says the government cannot scrap EU regulations, but “does recognise the burden they impose”, and will be looking for where the UK has “gold-plated” the minimum required.
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