Stephen Kelly is the UK government’s 'chief operating officer'. He was appointed in 2012 from software company Micro Focus.
At a hearing before the public accounts committee Kelly lambasted the government's use of management consultants and questioned the ethics of civil servants accepting hospitality from outside interests. According to Private Eye magazine:
- "The other thing, which appals me, actually… is the whole culture around ethics…” He was “almost puritanical about hospitality… I do not like invites to Formula 1 or to the Wimbledon men’s final and I do not do Henley… I believe that if you do that, your judgment becomes contaminated. It is as black and white as that.
The Eye noted that,
- Kelly might want to have a word with some of his senior Cabinet Office colleagues, including his boss, Jeremy Heywood, the cabinet secretary, whose judgement on some important areas of government policy looks dangerously, er, contaminated. The most recent registers of hospitality show that last year Heywood, the country’s most senior civil servant, was a prolific junketeer. He enjoyed a dinner and music recital from the firm trying to resist government clampdowns on energy pricing, Centrica, dinner from the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs, dinner and a private viewing at the Tate from PR firm Finsbury, dinners from Lloyds Banking and lobbyists The City UK, plus “refreshments, opera and dinner”, with his wife, from Robertson Robey, an investment banking outfit set up by former Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley bankers. Then there was management consultancy McKinsey’s annual dinner, another dinner from Robertson Robey, refreshments and private viewing of Manet at the Royal Academy from PR company Brunswick and a dinner with the CBI for all civil service department heads. To name but a few...
Heywood’s junketing is as nothing, however, compared to that of the civil servants who have the most commercial relationships with the biggest companies. The government’s Shareholder Executive is supposed to protect taxpayers’ interests in companies they own but more often ends up troughing with them. 
- Trough choices for government junketeers: Whitehall schmoozing, Private Eye, Issue 1376. October 2014
- Trough choices for government junketeers: Whitehall schmoozing, Private Eye, Issue 1376, accessed 14 November 2014