Restructuring problems cause late social insurance payments
TT/David Landes · 7 Jan 2009, 16:51
Published: 07 Jan 2009 16:51 GMT+01:00
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In findings submitted to the government, the Swedish Agency for Public Management (Statskontoret) warns that the effects of a comprehensive restructuring of the Social Insurance Agency are being felt by ordinary Swedes who’ve been forced to wait longer than expected for parental leave and other social insurance payments.
According to the report, the reorganization, which entailed a merging of the country’s local social insurance offices into one overarching agency, has adversely affected both the organization’s performance and its finances.
If Försäkringskassan is to stay within its budget, it must cut costs by at least 900 million kronor ($116 million), according to the public management agency report.
“It’s not likely that such large savings can be reached in the short term without having consequences for those insured,” said Statskontoret director general Yvonne Gustafsson in a statement.
“It’s important for Försäkringskassan’s leadership to now make sure they get the full value from their organizational changes. The point is to achieve a more fair and effective operation.”
The public management agency highlights several shortcomings related to the restructuring, including poor coordination between work on the reorganization and Försäkringskassan’s regular activities which has led to internal uncertainty about which decisions are binding.
Statskontoret also criticizes the social insurance body for a lack of clarity in its IT-operations, which has led to increased costs and shortcomings in personnel policies.