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Information Technology Projects

Volume 458: debated on Wednesday 14 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what information technology projects have been (a) cancelled and (b) placed under review by his Department in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (118805)

The Department undertakes a large number of projects which deliver business change and policy initiatives. IT changes are an enabling component of many projects. The number of projects in train at any one time will vary and the duration of the project lifecycle is often more than one calendar year. The following table includes only those projects that have been formally closed where the IT element is such that non-delivery of the IT would significantly damage the project's ability to deliver its intended results and the investment in the project has exceeded £1 million.

Project name

Contractors involved

Investment expenditure (£ million)

Document management (closed 2006-07)

None appointed at time of cancellation


Retirement planner (closed 2004-05)

Accenture as Solution Provider EDS as Solution Operator


E-enabled retirement pension (closed 2006-07)



Benefits processing replacement programme (BPRP) (closed 2006-07)

IBM: solution design services. PA Consulting: client side programme management and implementation support.


1 Including future commitments.

The figure for BPRP is some £8 million less than that provided in the answer given on 6 February 2007, Official Report, column 863W. An external audit is now expected to confirm total cost and forward commitments on BPRP of around £135 million.

A significant amount of the investment in BPRP is of future value to the Department. We estimate that at least half of the sum invested (around £73 million) is of future value to the Department.

The Department has a comprehensive monitoring system in place to ensure that projects and programmes continue to deliver value for money, make effective use of departmental resources and continue to meet departmental objectives throughout their development. As such all projects and programmes are subject to periodic comprehensive reviews.