PLANS to create a single office “hub” and make hundreds of job cuts have been outlined as part of the next phase of local government reorganisation.

A report due to BCP Council's cabinet ahead of its meeting on Wednesday says the moves could save it as much as £37 million a year.

Director of resources, Julian Osgathorpe, said they would “fundamentally" change the way the council worked.

“It’s a difficult, long and complex period but the benefits are significant enough that we think it’s the right way for us to move,” he said.

“We have an obligation to be bold and ambitious as a council and for the people it serves.”

His report follows a review by KPMG commissioned by the council.

The council would not say how much it paid the firm for the work.

Published at the beginning of the month, the report sets out proposals for the creation of a “centrally-located council hub” with smaller “spokes”, such as depots, running alongside it.

It says this would be a key part of the council moving to more modern, flexible ways of working such as hot desking and working from home.

The cabinet report says: “It has been believed for some time that one of the most significant barriers to the successful creation of a ‘one council’ way of working and culture will be the extremely diverse asset base – perhaps most importantly, the principal office locations.”

Mr Osgathorpe said no decision had been made on whether the hub would be one of its existing buildings or whether a new headquarters would be created.

Other sites deemed not to be required would then either be redeveloped or sold off to fund other council priorities.

The KPMG report also outlines the potential to cut between the equivalent of 421 and 622 full-time jobs.

This is expected to save the council between £15 million and £23 million a year.

Mr Osgathorpe said the council hoped to avoid having to make as many redundancies as possible by not replacing some employees who leave roles over the coming years.

The council has a turnover rate of about ten per cent - the equivalent of about 400 of its staff leaving each year.

Total savings for the whole next phase of the merger is forecast to be between £22 million and £36.8 million.

The one-off cost of the overhaul would be between £20 million and £30 million.

Mr Osgathorpe said where the council falls on the spectrum of potential savings will be determined by how ambitious the council wished to be.

“If you are going to spend this much money you need to make sure you are creating the best council organisation you can get," he said.

“There’s no doubt this is a big job and there will be difficult times but it’s the responsibility we have in the work of local government reorganisation in Dorset.

“What we are talking about is creating a council that is fit for purpose in the 21st century and which is capable of adapting into the future.”