Take part

Start a public service mutual

If you work in the public sector, you may be able to set up a public service mutual.

Work colleagues watch a presentation

What is it?

Public service mutuals are organisations that have left the public sector but continue delivering public services. Employee control plays a significant role in their operation.

There are many forms of mutual. You might think of major employee-owned businesses like John Lewis or building societies such as Nationwide which are fully or majority owned by their members. But mutuals can also be co-operatives or social enterprises.

Mutuals are free from government control and help their staff deliver and improve their services as they know best.

Mutuals let dedicated public servants combine their passion for helping others with their desire to provide world-class services, and share in the rewards of success.

How can I get involved?

Setting up a public service mutual may be for you if you’re working in the public sector and think that:

  • you can run a service more effectively, achieving better outcomes for users
  • you can deliver a service more efficiently, saving on costs and time
  • you have identified a gap in service provision
  • you want greater control and autonomy over the service you work in

Where can I find out more?

Read guidance on how to start a public service mutual or email mutuals@culture.gov.uk.