Business leaders could be called into government departments to score civil servants on their effectiveness, under plans set out in an independent review to be published on Monday.
The Commission for Smart Government, which has compiled a series of proposals for the reform of Whitehall, will recommend a new "Ofsted for government departments", staffed by private sector managers with experience of overseeing large projects.
It is hoped the plans will harness the expertise of businesspeople to streamline departments and reduce civil service wastage.
The review will recommend that "tough teams" of "people who know what ‘well-run’ looks like" should assess government departments on a set of criteria.
The scores from those reviews would then be published online, and the results would impact on the performance reviews of the permanent secretaries – the most senior civil servant in each department.
While schools, hospitals and care homes are assessed by independent regulators to make sure they are performing well, no similar system of oversight exists for projects run centrally from Whitehall.
The commission, chaired by Lord Herbert, will also suggest the permanent secretaries are renamed "chief executives" in a further move to make departments more similar to private companies.
Departments have already seen the introduction of non-executive directors, largely commercial managers, who are imported to oversee the performance of the civil service.
The process of appointing non-executive directors came under fire last month after it was revealed a Department of Health appointee, Gina Coladangelo, was having an affair with the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock.
Metropolitan mayors should also be subject to additional scrutiny, the commission argues, recommending that elected officials should be subject to public hearings to analyse their budgets.
The system would mirror the role of the Public Accounts Committee and National Audit Office in overseeing government departments in Westminster.
Captains of industry could be used to "grill" metro mayors like Andy Burnham in Greater Manchester to ensure their spending is transparent, the report suggests.
The commission also suggests that ministers introduce an app to become a one-stop shop for all government services.
It notes that while the NHS and Covid-19 apps have become a "feature of life for many", there is no app that covers all other services such as passport applications and tax bills.