To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will list all the computer consultancies employed by his Department and agencies, since November 1991, the tasks for which they were engaged, and the total cost to his Department.
The employment of computer consultancies is a matter for Mr. Ian Magee, the chief executive of the Information Technology Services Agency. He will write to the hon. Member and a copy will be placed in the Library.
Letter from Ian Magee to Mr. John McAllion, dated 23 July 1993:
The Secretary of State has asked me to respond to the Parliamentary Question, tabled by you on 21 July 1993, concerning computer consultancies employed by the Department of Social Security. As Chief Executive of the Information Technology Services Agency, I have responsibility for engaging IT consultants for the Department.
There are a large number of consultancy suppliers employed within the Department of Social Security and the number of individual computer contracts runs into several hundred. If however there is a specific area of work that is of interest to you I will be happy to provide you with further details. The tasks for which they are employed covers all areas of IT including business analysis, software development, technical support and technical innovation. Individual tasks can range from the development of a specific interface between systems, to assistance with the advancement of our open systems strategy. A list of the suppliers of these services is attached.
You also refer to the total cost of this work to the Department. I am unable to provide information on the value of the individual contracts as to do so may be a breach of commercial confidentiality. However, I can say that the value of contracts let between November 1991 and July 1993 is in the region of £87M. I should also explain that some of the more recent contracts do extend beyond this financial year.