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Departmental ICT

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the (a) planned and (b) actual cost
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of each IT project completed by his Department and its agencies since 1997 was; what costs have been incurred on IT projects not yet completed; what the estimated cost of each incompleted project is; and if he will make a statement. [246904]

Jonathan Shaw: Although the Department for Work and Pensions does not have any discrete IT projects, it has a number of projects and programmes that include changes to, or new, IT to a greater or lesser extent.

The Department for Work and Pensions was created in June 2001, prior to that arrangements were the responsibility of different Departments and Agencies. The provision of actual costs for all such projects completed by the Department and its Agencies since then would only be available at a disproportionate cost. We have provided such information as is readily available in the two following tables. The first includes:

Table 2 details recently closed projects including planned and actual investment costs on completion. The costs of running the solutions implemented by the projects and programmes are not included in either table as in the vast majority of cases they are more than compensated for by the financial and non financial benefits they generate.

Initiatives that are associated with ongoing system improvements or enhancements as part of business as usual are also excluded.

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Table 1: Current DWP IT portfolio
£ million rounded
Project Purpose Original planned costs Actual costs as at November 2008 Estimated cost on completion

Employment and Support Allowance

The project delivers the systems, processes and training to support delivery of the new employment and support allowance.




Customer Information System

This project will deliver a database of key citizen information to be shared across DWP. The database will complement information currently available in the Department's key customer information systems, i.e. personal details computer system and departmental central index, and become their replacement. Consideration is being given for wider use of CIS by other Government Departments.




Central Payments System

A modern integrated central payment engine and accounts payable system to improve accounting for benefit/pension payments. The system will also reduce risks of service failure, increase speed and efficiency, and provide information to improve customer service and reduce fraud and error.




Pensions Transform- ation Programme

The programme will transform the Pension Service, bringing together business and IT change in ways that improve customer service and deliver efficiencies.




Pension Reform Delivery Programme

To co-ordinate, manage and deliver a range of measures and consequential impacts which will establish a new structure for the UK pension system long term.




Document Repository Service

This project seeks to support the Department's modernisation programmes through the provision of a document repository to store digitised images of documents received from customers (letters, faxes, e-mails etc.), cutting down paper in the organisation.




Data Centre Strategy

The project is addressing the ongoing continued threat of business service continuity with a replacement strategy for Washington Data Centre.




DWP Change Programme

This programme brigades a number of complementary initiatives to deliver the DWP Business Vision. It includes projects to bring in continuous improvement using lean techniques which should allow greater customer focus and efficiency in our process and business improvement projects to allow greater access to information.




Provider Referrals and Payment Project

Deploy an IT system to automate and e-enable payment transactions between Jobcentre Plus and training providers.




Local Services Integration programme

To provide local services with an IT solution that supports the end to end process making administration more efficient.




Government Connect

To roll out a secure data network connecting Government and local authorities, including secure file transfer, e-mail and web-browser capability.




Government Connect—£33 million forecast spend are the total costs of this cross government programme—planned DWP funding (£8 million), Communities and Local Government (£19 million) and Department for Children and Families (£6 million).

Table 2: Recently closed projects
£ million rounded
Project Purpose Original planned costs Actual costs of project

Centralisation of Benefit processing

To centralise, automate and standardise benefit processing



Provider-Led pathways to work

Central to the welfare reform agenda this project will contract the private and voluntary sector to provide additional help and support for all but the most severely ill or disabled incapacity benefit customers gaining employment. Additional help will be provided through additional mandatory monthly work- focused interviews and tailored, job-focused support, including help to manage customer’s health condition, especially in relation to work.



DWP IT Transformation Programme (inc TREDSS & ICONS)

Establishing new commercial arrangements with EDS for the delivery of live systems and services.



Fraud Referrals and Interventions Management System

Fraud Referrals and Intervention Management System aims to deliver modernised programme protection activity



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Disability Living Allowance

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what procedures are in place to verify and monitor the accuracy of disability living allowance award entitlement decisions. [246579]

Jonathan Shaw: The Pension, Disability and Carers Service (PDCS) has in place a number of procedures to verify and monitor the accuracy of disability living allowance (DLA) award entitlement decisions.

PDCS has a dedicated national checking team that continuously monitors a randomly selected sample of DLA outcome decisions and appeal submissions. In addition to this, DLA Operations have their own Quality Improvement Support Team that performs random checks on a sample of all recent DLA outcome decisions from each operational unit. Local operational managers also have technical checking teams who target areas of known difficulty before decisions are issued.

Each year, PDCS also performs 12,000 random case interventions under the Right Payment Programme, to ensure the accuracy and correctness of the DLA live load.

To encourage consistency of approach and better quality decisions, PDCS has introduced Customer Case Management (CCM), which provides comprehensive medical guidance for decision makers on the effects of disability, and guidance on focused further evidence gathering including more direct contact between decision makers and customers. To complement the existing checking regime, work is underway to introduce post decision checks targeted at those decisions that do not appear to conform to the medical guidance.

Jobcentre Plus

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the total budget forecast for Jobcentre Plus for the next calendar year was (a) in August 2008 and (b) following the Pre-Budget Report. [245037]

Mr. McNulty: The Department’s published three year plan is available in the Library and sets out the planned expenditure of Jobcentre Plus as part of the 2007 comprehensive spending review. The Department will publish a revised plan before the end of the current financial year providing further details on future Jobcentre Plus expenditure.

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the (a) average, (b) lowest and (c) highest salary paid to a Jobcentre Plus personal adviser is in each region; [246580]

(2) what the minimum educational requirements necessary to become a Jobcentre Plus personal adviser are; [246586]

(3) how many and what proportion of Jobcentre Plus staff are paid at the minimum wage rate. [246587]

Mr. McNulty: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the acting chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Mel Groves. I have asked him to provide the hon. Member with the information requested.

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Letter from Mel Groves:


National Inner London Outer London Specified locations











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