Following the financial crisis, the Government faces increasingly stark choices on how to best manage its resources. It needs to tackle the deficit, promote growth and deliver public services on a much tighter budget. To make informed decisions on how it should deal with these challenges, Whitehall needs accurate and timely information and analysis about all the activities on which it spends money.

However, the historic weakness of Whitehall in producing and using such management information remains a focus of concern for bodies like the National Audit Office (NAO). The absence of such information and analysis is particularly striking to those from a commercial background, such as the new non-executives on departmental boards.

The Institute for Government, in partnership with CIMA and Deloitte, looked in depth at a number of areas within Whitehall where the use of management information is being improved. The research in this publication aimed to provide a clearer understanding of the common factors underpinning improvement, and to make suggestions about how to drive systemic improvement across government.