Ex-consultant Debra Soper joins the Government Property Agency

26 November 2021 Consultancy.uk 2 min. read
More news on

The UK’s Government Property Agency has made a senior appointment in the form of Debra Soper. The former consultant joins as the organisation’s first COO.

Formed in 2018, the Government Property Agency (GPA) is an executive agency of the Cabinet Office, a department of the Government of the UK. The organisation is responsible for managing government property and advising government departments in their management of property. This means the entity plays a crucial role in the Government’s levelling up, net zero and civil service transformation initiatives.

As the GPA looks to help the Government push ahead with its various reform campaigns, the organisation has appointed its first Chief Operations Officer. Debra Soper will now work to help the organisation bring aboard the wide range of professionals it needs to help deliver the previously mentioned initiatives.

Debra Soper, COO, The Government Property Agency

According to GPA CEO Steven Boyd, “Property is about people. We acquire and fit out buildings to deliver great places to work for our customers. And we are reshaping our workplace offering to focus on people rather than buildings. Debra's appointment as Chief Operating Officer, with her background in people, is a key part of our growth strategy.”

Soper arrives with more than 30 years of public and private sector experience to draw upon. After spending a decade in pensions administration, she joined Aon Consulting, working as an Operations Manager, before spells with Pearson and Accenture – where she was Head of Pensions Services.

In 2016, Soper joined the Cabinet Office, initially as Director of Civil Service & Royal Mail Pensions. In 2020, she was named Chief Operating Officer, and latterly became Deputy Government Chief People Officer too – before exiting the organisation earlier in 2021.

Commenting on her new challenge, Soper said, “The GPA has a huge mandate to deliver for Government. Every one of our 300 people, and those in our extensive supply chain, has a role to play. I am proud to be playing my own part in this and helping to take forward the Agency's exciting agenda.”

On Soper’s watch, the GPA will now actively recruit more than 100 roles across various disciplines. In particular, she emphasised the organisation is “looking for people with strong property and commercial skills who are prepared to innovate to deliver for our customers.”

The GPA is currently working on delivering the Government's Hubs Programme as part of the Levelling Up agenda and Workplace Transformation Project. It is also managing 800,000 sq m of the Government’s office and warehouse portfolios, and providing guidance on workplace services including design, technology, sustainability and customer experience.