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Government Project

UK Government cut down on Legacy Tech Contracts

August 18, 2017 | By | No Comments

The weeks seem to be moving so quickly this year, it feels that as soon as I put out the blog I am writing the next one. Well that only means we are working hard and getting things done at EGB and look forward to even further success. Maybe the reason it feels so fast is that there are two birthdays close together, last week mine, this week our Operations Manager Sheree. She loved the gifts and the Beauty and the Beast themed birthday cake that the office gave her.

Onto this week’s blog, it is taking a look into the Public Sector disaggregation of contracts which have started to affect some large businesses. A recently published report by TechMarketView has shown that certain business that handle contracts for the Public Sector are getting hit by the Government’s contract disaggregation. Simply put, the government wanted to remove the Oligopoly that certain business had gained over the IT contacts that the government were offering. To name a couple of the businesses that were affected are: BT and DXC (Merger of Hewlett Packard Enterprises and Computer Sciences Corporation). This would be down to the fact that these two companies held a large share of government contracts.

The hit hasn’t been insignificant either, with DXC’s revenue (Based on TechMarketView’s UK Public Sector Software, IT & Business Process Services (SITS) top 20 ranking) dropping 11% for the year of 2016 to $1.2bn. The BT group saw a drop of 20% in its sales through the public sector coming to £513m, with Serco suffering the worst drop of 45% down to £194m. “It was those that had a large legacy footprint in central government, that continued to suffer heavy declines: most notable are DXC and BT,” said the report.

This could spell out good news for contractors as with these IT contracts being split up maybe some requirements will trickle down to be handled internally rather than outsourced to a company. Or perhaps with small organisations taking on the contracts there will be more chance for Contractors to be assigned. It will take time to tell if there is a benefit, though it may not be realised at all with Brexit on the horizon.

There are some comments that suggest the disaggregation of contracts will come to a pause as Brexit throws too many spanners into the works. The mind set being that it would be far easier to renew current contracts rather than to retender them for different businesses which would be a far more complex process.

It wasn’t all bad news, at least based on the figures, for companies who are part of SITS list. Capita who are on the top of the list had a 3% increase of its Public Sector Sales taking it to 1.8bn, this accounts for roughly 47% of their total sales. Though the report emphasises that this gain is not a true one as “Capita acquired Trustmarque, the software reseller and services arm of Liberata Group in June 2016.” If balanced out would infer reduced revenue rather than growth, so we take that with a little bit of salt.

What are your views on the disaggregation of contracts by the government; do you think it is a waste of time or do you think this will end up providing better services? Whatever your view let us know in the comments below, as always, we are happy to hear from you. I am not too sure where I stand on it, just hope that it means there are more opportunities to help you all get some contracts.

Thanks for reading,



Top UK Government Project Failures

June 16, 2017 | By | No Comments

So, I’ve been away on annual leave most of this week and my first day back I got hounded to start preparing the blog. I may have mentioned it before but the office gets a little heated when it comes to choosing a topic. A few of us are standing up and shouting about moving into Vlogging but I’m not sure about that. What do you guys think? Would you be interested in seeing an EGB Vlog? After a tense office-wide discussion, we settled on something relevant and decided to look at Government projects and just how badly some of them failed. We got really lucky and found that the Software Advisory Service had already done the leg work and listed the most catastrophic Government Projects and just how badly they went over budget. As an added extra, they’ve included the end cost to you the taxpayer.

7. Department for Transport Shared Services Centre

This project was created to combine the DfT’s human resource and financial services together in a single site based in Swansea. The idea that the cut in administration costs and in the end overall save the taxpayer £57 million. Initially costed at £53 Million, the project overspent by £28 Million coming to a total cost of £81 Million. The Public Accounts Committee’s comments on the reason for such an overspend was due to “stupendous incompetence”.

6. Common Agricultural Policy Delivery Programme

This particular programme was an IT scheme that was to help allocate subsidies to the farming industry. It’s original planned cost was to be £155 Million but due to issues between the three main key bodies, ended up with a £60 Million overspend coming to a total of £216 Million. The cause for the issues, as according to the Public Accounts Committee, lack of consistent priorities between the main bodies. On top of the overspend, the programme ended up delaying payments to farmers as well as incurring penalties from the European Commission.

5. Libra System for Magistrates

The Libra system is a case management system that was created for the Magistrates Court, the project was originally tendered for by Fujitsu for £146 Million. This was the start of an ever-inflating price for the project as before the deal had been signed Fujitsu upped the cost to £184 Million as Fujitsu’s board said it couldn’t support the charging basis of the original bid. 10 months into the project, Fujitsu asked for a higher amount again as they were running a £39 Million deficit on the project. At this point, there were warnings about the financial model used by Fujitsu but the project was too important to let go. This led to a further two quote increased culminating at £389 Million, this was rejected and another company was contracted to fulfil the task.

4. Edinburgh Trams

The Edinburgh Tram project was a seven-year long project to bring a tram route to the city of Edinburgh. The project was projected to cost £375 Million. By the time pen was put to paper the cost had risen to £489 Million and at completion the project has cost £776 Million, this is not including £200 Million in interest costs on a 30-year loan. The project was plagued with issues including contractual disputes, safety concerns and complaints from the local populace.

3. Scottish Parliament Building

Love or hate the design, the Scottish Parliament Building had exponential overspend compared to the original cost of the project. Originally the Scottish Parliament Building was projected to cost only £10 Million but at the end of the project it came to a staggering £414 Million. This was attributed to poor management of the project, especially in fulfilment of costs and the way major design changes were implemented. You think that would be the end of it but figures have revealed that the average repair bill comes to £141,000 per month.

2. NHS National Program for IT

The NHS were looking to create a patient record system to handle the vast swathe of information they have to deal with. This system would have been the largest non-military system IT system to have been created. This system was eventually canned as it was plagued with many issues, the project ended up costing £10 Billion which was £3.6 Billion more than the proposed cost. Out of 169 trusts that the system was to be implemented to, only 13 received a full patient administration system. Though this caused more issues for the NHS as it caused issues for these trusts, prompting The Milton Keynes Foundation to warn others not to use it.

1. Defence Information Infrastructure

The MoD’s Defence Information Infrastructure (DII) is a secure military network user by all branches of the military as well as MoD civil servants. When the project was initially proposed (2005) to Parliament the cost for this project was £2.3 Billion, though a report has shown that even at this juncture they knew the cost would be more than double at £5.8 Billion. By 2008 the programme was 18 months late and had delivered less than half of the project and none of the Secret capability of the system. Part of the blame for the issues came down to a lack of a suitable pilot for the programme.

A lot of money having to be funnelled into projects that have growing issues, or in the NHS’s case thrown down the drain. Many of these programmes could have been partially saved by better management and communications between contractors and departments. This is why we look for top calibre candidates to make sure the government keeps on track. If you think you are up to the challenge of keeping the government in check, send us your CV and we will add you to our database.