30 March 2011
Francis Maude today launched a major strategy for cutting public spending on Government information and communication technology (ICT) by millions of pounds. The Government ICT Strategy also aims to encourage more innovation and small and medium sized enterprise (SME) participation in Government contracts.
The strategy sets out how Government will adopt the right methods, policies and skills to ensure that its ICT supports efficient public services.
The Government ICT Strategy aims to cut duplication and waste in Government ICT. It sets out how Government will adopt the right methods, policies and skills to ensure that its ICT supports efficient public services.
Francis Maude also announced the appointment of leading digital expert Tom Loosemore to lead work on a prototype for a single Government web domain, as recommended by Government Digital Champion Martha Lane-Fox.
Francis Maude said:
For too long, Government has wasted vast amounts of money on ineffective and duplicate IT systems. We need to ensure that frontline services have the tools to do their job to deliver effective public services.
"We will cut out duplication and wastage by sharing more of our assets across government and using common systems.
"We will end the oligopoly of big business supplying government IT by breaking down contracts into smaller, more flexible projects. This will open up the market to SMEs and new providers.
In the ICT strategy, the Government commits to:
John Higgins, director general of Intellect, the trade association for the UK’s technology industry said:
UK taxpayers should expect the best from their public services, and this strategy provides a clear direction for how technology can help deliver better services for less. We are especially pleased to see that it recognises ICT as an enabler and not just an overhead. By adopting innovative approaches and opening up opportunities to SMEs, social enterprises, charities and other new providers, we will see a dynamic supplier ecosystem and greater benefits to the taxpayer.
“The technology industry is fully behind this strategy and we are committed to working collectively with the Government to turn it into reality.
Specifically, the strategy commits to:
As part of the Government’s strategy for moving services online and allowing transparent dialogue with the public, the ICT strategy commits to:
As part of the Government’s commitment to involve more SMEs and voluntary sector organisations in public sector contracts, the Cabinet Office launched one such online portal earlier this week. The Innovation Launch Pad allows small and medium sized businesses to pitch their ideas on how they could deliver better value for money in the delivery of Government's business. The best ideas will be handpicked and, after intensive mentoring from some of Britain's foremost entrepreneurs, the successful businesses will be invited to present their ideas at a Product Surgery and to attend a Downing Street reception.
Francis Maude said:
SMEs can offer Government more innovative, more flexible and more cost effective products and services, but we know they often find it difficult to bring their ideas to our attention. Through the Innovation Launch Pad, we will get better value for Government and support small business. Government needs more online engagement like this.
Notes to editors