View Full Version : Olympics (again ! ) and "sums for Civil Servants Book1"
Krystal n chips
17th May 2008, 07:03
I assume from this that rudimentary maths ( ie the form that used to be taught at junior school at about ages 9-11...a long time ago I know..and when we actually had a semblance of an education system ) was never an entry requirement for the Civil Service upper echelons then ? :rolleyes:
And I do like the inspired wisdom that allowed only two lifts for the disabled....given the intended use as a host venue for the Paraolympics.
Nobody however, will be deemed accountable for this....well that would mean taking responsibility for their actions now wouldn't it....this only applies to the proles during various hectoring lectures of course.....not the, ahem..."decision makers" :rolleyes:
Summary execution is such a vulgar term....and probably upsets the PC brigade anyway..... serial culling sounds so much better after all...although obviously there may be the odd little point of law to contend with here..so it will have to remain in the planning stage....sadly
The only good thing to emerge is that the debacle will provide enough case study material .....and variety of "complete and utter bolleaux excuses" for Business School students for years to come ! :E
And I would still like to know, how,exactly, this event is going to benefit moi...and a few million other moi's in the UK.
17th May 2008, 07:13
Why don't all nations club together to build a permanent Olympic complex in Greece, the home of the games?
We could still take it in turn to host the games and all records would be set in exactly the same conditions - not to mention the squillions of dollars each nation would save when they get to host.
Just a thought - probably far too logical for a civil servant!
17th May 2008, 07:22
The latest budget of £242m for the aquatic centre accounts for inflation, VAT, professional fees and project management costs, but has still shocked many who have watched it rise to more than three times the original forecast.
The devils, they are using military equipment supplier tactics on the poor old tax payer.
17th May 2008, 08:59
Before having a right royal go at the civil service, consider this statement again:
professional fees and project management costs
That will be the consultants, then. Because the civil service has been run into the ground and mismanaged so badly at a central level, rather than invest in specialists, the government would rather have generalists who are experts in nothing but pushing paper around. So in this atmosphere, the departments outsource to commercial companies who charge a pretty packet for their services.
17th May 2008, 09:15
Having seen what the likes of KPMG have done to Defence Logistics, I couldn't agree more. The Civil Sevice sin (and Flag/Field/Air rank Military) is to accept crap advice simply because good money has been paid for it!
Krystal n chips
17th May 2008, 09:20
That's fair comment on the "consultants" etc...sounds better than self opinionated financial leeches as a job description after all....but with all due respect, despite the mismanagement which you so accurately state is prevalent, surely there must still be a few with a functioning brain who could would have done some basic research into similar venue costs....to at least given them some idea as to the base level for a budget and then factored in some "what if?" costings to give a more realistic figure..rather than seemingly just go for the lowest estimate....and then watch with amazement as it triples ?.
There again, I suppose there is also the "behind the scenes" aka. political machinations factor to be considered as well...and which, I am sure, would make interesting reading..coughs!.
Either way, still largesse on a grand scale and sweet FA use to the UK taxpayer when all said and done..that's the UK as a whole for those who support the event...not one small area of East London and the South East of the UK.
10th Jun 2008, 17:25
Boris Johnson criticised London Olympics chiefs today for failing to come up with a "legacy masterplan" for the 2012 Games site.
The Mayor said there was "no sign" that any senior figures had seriously looked at the options and it was time they "got their skates on".
"There's no point in sinking all of this money into east London unless actually it is going to produce a long-term return," he said.
Mr Johnson was speaking ahead of a report by his Olympics adviser David Ross this week that will examine the budget for the Games. His remarks are the first sign of a split between City Hall and Olympic bosses over progress.
The Mayor admitted he was worried about some budget projections and would be considering what savings could be made. The ticking timebomb of the Games' finances is likely to be the projected value of land in the Olympic Park in Stratford after 2012.
"What we need is to have a complete overview of what on earth we're trying to achieve on the Olympics site and what in the long term is this really all about," said Mr Johnson.
"So far, there's absolutely no sign of what you call a legacy masterplan. There's no sign of anybody who has looked at this and said, 'Right, this is going to be London's Hyde Park of the east, this is going to be a university site.' No one has taken it and said this is the future.
He said: "The difficulty for me is the more we start to reconfigure in our imaginations what we think the ultimate goal of the site is, the more we have to think are that media centre and that stadium and that aquatic centre and the village suitable for our legacy? Then you start telling the Olympic Delivery Authority maybe we should be doing this in such and such a way and then immediately you start getting the problem of the builders of saying, 'Oh, if you want to respecify that, it's going to cost you the earth.'"
The Mayor singled out the main stadium and the aquatics, equestrian and media centres as being of particular concern and raised the prospect of transforming them into visitor attractions after 2012.
He said Zaha Hadid's design of the aquatics centre would make it difficult to transform it into a leisure facility with a "gigantic curlywurly slide". There was no "convincing" long-term future for the main stadium as a home for athletics, a claim which could put him at odds with Olympics chief Lord Coe, who has insisted there should be an athletics legacy.
Instead, Mr Johnson suggested the stadium could be used by a football club, although with West Ham ruling itself out on financial grounds it is highly unlikely this would be a Premiership side. He claimed "nobody has got a clue yet" about the future of the £490million media centre in Hackney but said possibilities included a huge market, university or home to "sunrise" industries.
The Mayor's remarks will be felt particularly keenly in his own London Development Agency, which has been in charge of the legacy masterplan but has not yet signed up a single tenant for after the Games.
(from:- http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23493226-details/Boris+reads+the+riot+act+over+London+2012+site/article.do )
10th Jun 2008, 17:42
Watched Boris on the news tother day he said he had already canceled a planned 100 council people junket to the Beijing Olympic Stadium (probably to see what kind of dustbins they are using) he has also killed a scheme for the London Tax payer to finance some feckwit fluffist plan to drive a London Bus all the way to Beijing.
Carry on Boris:ok: way to go.
10th Jun 2008, 20:16
"And I do like the inspired wisdom that allowed only two lifts for the disabled"
But probably invoiced for four.
10th Jun 2008, 21:27
Suggest Boris should be allowed to have a good look at ALL the numbers. He may look like a bumbling fool, but as Jeremy Hardy (I think) said 'you know he wouldn't hesitate to put you up against a wall and have you shot'.
A good man.
10th Jun 2008, 22:42
Wasnít it Plato who said ďA consultant is someone whose ego is too large for any single company to containĒ...?
In my (not inconsiderable) experience of business consulting I have formed the following opinions:
1.The people actually doing the job know whatís wrong AND how to put it right.
2. The people at the top of the organisation wonít listen to the people actually doing the job.
3.As a consultant you just have to listen to the people actually doing the job and write it up in managementspeak so that the people at the top of the organisation can understand it.
4.The more you charge, the more intently they listen.
Cynical, moi ? Itís kept me in foie gras since I left the world of wage-slavery!
11th Jun 2008, 03:22
Hello... Long time listener, first time caller. Thought I'd chip in with my $0.02.
I was an engineer (structural) on the Commonwealth Games Stadium in Manchester. That event also had urban regeneration as a big part of it's brief and that was partly the reason for sighting the stadium on a brownfield site out in the east.
The difference between that and the current Olympics debacle is that we knew right from the start that Manchester City FC was going to move into the stadium as soon as the games were over and designed the structure accrodingly. The project was completed well in time and the final bill was around the 45 million mark if I recall correctly.
Admittedly it's a smaller stadium with a more circumspect brief than the various Olympic venues so the dollars aren't directly comparable. But the point is that building things takes a long time and changes are invariably expensive which is why you need to set a brief early on and stick to it. Forward planning is essential and, as the pace of design and construction is a couple of orders of magnitude slower than the media spin cycle, knee-jerk pronouncments from the pollie of the day invariably end up in disaster.
If someone says they're going to build an 80,000 seater stadium, fine. But if they tell you they're going to deliver "a world class sports solution in accordance with current best practice" you can just hear the consultants cash registers start to chime.
11th Jun 2008, 13:03
'professional fees and project management costs'
In the UK this is normally the design and delivery team costs, architect, engineers etc. Not just the waste of space people who surround these projects.
The government used to have a property division which they sold off (gave away) in the early 1990's. Lots of 'experts' in design of bunkers, nuclear facilities, miltary bases etc, very few in stadium design. These 'experts', now in the private sector, also tend to surround public sector projects as 'consultants'.
With a few noteable exceptions, UK construction utterly refuses to learn from it's past mistakes, so I expect the usual budget and programme fiasco. It's not macho to risk doing it properly.
You have been warned. :=
11th Jun 2008, 20:14
With a few noteable exceptions, UK construction utterly refuses to learn from it's past mistakes,I suspect the UK construction industry carefully scrutinises, learns from, and improves on its past successes. Most other industries with publicly funded ventures do.
It is their customer who doesn't learn from past mistakes. But then it is difficult to learn from your mistakes if your vocabulary is limited to world-beating, state of the art, 21st century, revolutionary, leading edge, triumphant cliches.