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The Implementation of the National Probation Service Information Systems Strategy

“Good information systems have a vital part to play in helping probation officers carry out their work in supervising offenders serving their sentences in the community and in helping them turn against crime.

“Whilst the Home Office has been able to install a standard information technology infrastructure across a large part of the probation service, there are some important lessons to be learnt from the serious flaws in the Home Office’s procurement and management of this IT programme. The new National Probation Service now has an opportunity to address these issues as it develops a new IT strategy and enters into a new strategic partnership.”

Published:
26 Apr 2001

Purchasing Professional Services

“A significant amount of taxpayers’ money is spent on these services each year. We have found excellent examples of innovative practice but much more could be done to improve government purchasing. Implementing the changes we propose would free up at least £60 million a year for spending on public services”.

Published:
25 Apr 2001

Getting value for money from procurement – how auditors can help

A set of six questions for departments to consider to promote value for money in their expenditure on professional services, taken from from pages 15-16 of the NAO Value for Money report, “Purchasing Professional Services” (HC 400 2000-2001) published in April 2001.

Published:
1 Apr 2001

Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions: The Channel Tunnel Rail Link

“It is apparent that, faced with a range of complex issues, the Department handled negotiations with LCR in a competent manner. The financing of the restructured project is fundamentally different to that envisaged in 1996, and so is the distribution of risks between the various parties now involved. There are a number of important lessons here for future PPPs, along with some specific points for the Department”.

Published:
28 Mar 2001

The Medical Assessment of Incapacity and Disability Benefits

“This has been an innovative project for the Department of Social Security, involving the outsourcing of a service which is close to the department’s core business. The Benefits Agency medical service was underachieving and operated within tight resource constraints. Outsourcing has cut costs and speeded up the processing of the work, but the Department, with SEMA Group, must concentrate on improving the quality of assessments and customer service.

“Bottlenecks and delays throughout the system for paying these benefits also need to be addressed. The aim should be to ensure that disability benefits are speedily paid to those entitled to them, as well as reducing losses to the public purse from payments to those who are no longer eligible for benefit.”

Published:
9 Mar 2001

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport: The Re-negotiation of the PFI-type Deal for the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported to Parliament today that the Royal Armouries* in July 1999 successfully negotiated a revised deal with Royal Armouries (International) plc** (“RAI”) which ensured that the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds remained open. The revised deal has also made it possible for the future redevelopment of … Read more

Published:
18 Jan 2001

Modernising procurement

“This report is not about the faults of the past but the opportunities for the future. Its purpose is to stimulate and encourage good procurement practice. There are bound to be risks associated with changing established practices but I am convinced that these risks can be managed and minimised, fear of such risks should not be allowed to stifle innovation”.

Published:
20 Oct 1999