DWP Central Freedom of Information Team
Our Ref: FOI 5504
DATE: 2nd December 2013
Dear Ms Sanderson,
Thank you for your Freedom of Information request received on 22nd November 2013. You
asked: Can you provide any information you hold about the average cost of processing a JSA
sanction as follows:
1. The administrative processing of the sanction.
2. The Decision Making process.
3. The administration of a new claim.
The data required to answer these questions is sourced from the Department for Work and
Pensions (DWP) Activity Based Management (ABM) model for 2013/14 which calculates unit
costs for a range of pre-determined activities.
For the purposes of this request I have interpreted that you require:
1. The unit costs of applying a sanction to a claim
2. The unit cost of making a Labour Market decision i.e. a decision on whether a claimant
meets the eligibility conditions for receiving JSA
3. The unit cost of processing a new JSA claim
1. The ABM model does not have a specific activity for the application of a sanction to a claim
therefore I am unable to answer the first part of your request.
2. A decision on whether a claimant meets the eligibility conditions for receiving JSA is
required at the start of a claim. Where this is straightforward, i.e. there is no doubt about the
claimant’s eligibility, this decision is made by the local adviser and the claim goes straight to
the processing section.
Where there is some doubt over a claimant’s eligibility then the claim is referred to a specialist
decision maker for a decision to be made. The average unit cost of making a Labour Market
decision on a new JSA claim is £11.47.
A doubt over a claimant’s eligibility, which would require a decision to be made by a specialist
decision maker, may occur during the life of a claim. The average unit cost of making a Labour
Market decision on an on-going JSA claim is £7.44.
3. The average unit cost of processing a new JSA Claim is £9.40. This includes the costs of
making the straightforward decisions on eligibility referred to above.
The unit costs quoted above are sourced from the ABM model, activities:
LM Decision Making – Claims (for new JSA claims)
LM Decision Making - Maintenance (for on-going claims)
JSA Full and Rapid Reclaims
and are based on average costs for the period April to October 2013.
These are direct staff costs and do not include any costs for management support, central
overheads or non staff costs.
If you have any queries about this letter please contact me quoting the reference number
DWP Central FoI Team
Your right to complain under the Freedom of Information Act
If you are not happy with this response you may request an internal review by e-mailing freedom-of-information-
firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to DWP, Central FoI Team, Caxton House, 6-12 Tothill Street, London.
SW1H 9NA. Any review request should be submitted within two months of the date of this letter.
If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review you may apply directly to the Information
Commissioner’s Office for a decision. Generally the Commissioner cannot make a decision unless you have
exhausted our own complaints procedure. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: The Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow Cheshire SK9 5AF www.ico.gov.uk