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£18bn Government IT scandal - 3 pages in The Times today

Discussion in 'News' started by wagnerk, Feb 3, 2009.

  1. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator


    £18bn Government IT scandal - 3 pages in The Times today

    On its front page today - and in a two-page spread inside - The Times has published a joint Times and Computer Weekly investigation on government IT including an opinion piece from us.

    The articles refer to IT-based projects, programmes and contracts which have exceeded the original announced costs by more than £18bn.

    MPs are fed up with failures of some large government IT-based projects and programmes - as are the government IT professionals, civil and public servants, and contractors who are achieving success on very limited budgets and find their work is overshadowed by the project Chimeras which have unrealistic time-frames and budgets.

    The opinion and the analysis in The Times make it clear that we're not attacking government IT people but the way projects are approved without enough Parliamentary or external challenge to assumptions.

    Read the whole article here.

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    1. GiddyG
    2. wagnerk
      The funny thing is that when a system does work/come in on time, it's not reported on. Can you imagine the Government running without the systems in place?

    3. onoski
      This is nothing new as the tabloids are doing what they are good at making hoo ha:)
    4. GiddyG
      Exactly! We had loads of people filing SA returns on line this year, and no one says a dickie bird.
    5. GiddyG
      Yup... we could be better but, as Ken says, our systems are working or we wouldn't be collecting tax.
    6. TimoftheC
      The trouble is, those systems are usually poorly planned and implemented.

      As an example - I work for a firm of solicitors and all of our Legal Aid work is overseen by a bureaucracy called the Legal Services Commission (LSC). Over a year ago the LSC launched a system called "LSC Online" so that all firms could report their claims and other bits electronically, where before, it was mostly done manually. It was supposed to be a centralisation of billing and reporting into an online account. Now, imagine how much money had been spent it planning the launch of LSC Online, writing the software, updating the systems and training both the LSC staff and training days for Solicitors' Practices.

      Well, LSC Online lasted about a month before they realised there were significant shortcomings in the system and they took it down - OVER THIRTEEN MONTHS AGO!!!!.

      They are now in the final stages and relaunching LSC Online and there is another bout of training days for Solicitors' Practices coming up. Imagine the extra expense of having a team of people completely re-work the system for 13 months and then the added expense of launching it yet again. Not a mention of that in the papers that I've seen but I would suggest we are talking in the tens of millions of tax payers money down the drain!!!

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