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Government claims big digital savings



Audit shows £1.7 billion in reduced costs for 2014-15 against 2009-10

The government has claimed savings of £18.6 billion over the past financial year, including almost £600 million related to the activities of the Government Digital Service (GDS).

The figures, which cover 2014-15 and are set against a baseline of 2009-10, are included in an internal audit published by the Efficiency and Reform Group in the Cabinet Office.

An announcement on the savings said that across all areas, £1.7 billion came from digital and technology related activities, and £1.5 billion from transformation, which included spending on IT. It cited the example of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, with savings of £30 million from negotiations and savings on its IT contract.

Biggest GDS chunk

The audit document shows the biggest chunk of GDS-related savings at £391 million through various controls, project cancellations and ICT strategy savings.

Its transformation initiatives provided economies of £105 million, consisting largely of £61 million through the move of departmental websites to GOV.UK, and £36 million saved by the Department of Work and Pensions by reducing the cost of its identity assurance services.

Another £7 million came from working with different departments and agencies on digital transformation programmes.

Further savings of £103 million, spread across departments, were made on telecommunications hosting under the Public Services Network procurement framework..

The headline elements of the total savings were broken down into: £6.1 billion on better procurement and contract management: £1.5 billion on transformation; £4.6 billion on cutting waste in construction and reducing costs in major projects; £5.8 billion on workforce reform; and £676 million on reducing fraud, error and debt.





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