HMRC pays Capgemini £8bn for…?

Capgemini services cost UKGov £8bn

Our latest newsletter included a piece about Chris Chant’s recent speech in which he revealed quite jaw-dropping levels of wasted money and inefficiencies in government IT. Sadly I doubt that came as any surprise to anyone.

No way to assess value

Now, Tony Collins has revealed that HMRC has paid £8bn to Capgemini for online filing costs and that, according to the National Audit Office:

[HMRC] does not yet have a detailed breakdown of the costs of online filing services, so it cannot benchmark those costs to assess their value for money.

Gawk. Rather staggeringly the article goes on to reveal that:

Unfortunately for taxpayers it is not unusual for a department to pay its main IT supplier without having a full breakdown of the bills.

Justify the expenditure

You might want to read this final quote from the article and then work out quite how much Capgemini has raked in this way since 1994:

It is up to HMRC to insist on a breakdown.  Its IT services have been outsourced since 1994. Shouldn’t it know exactly what it is paying billions for by now?

Damn right it should, and it should be able to explain in full and tedious detail why this money was justified and precisely how the UK infrastructure, personified in the tax payer, has benefitted. And then it needs to explain why this system was better than an open source alternative.

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