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HMRC to close RCDTS technology services provider


Mark Say Managing Editor

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HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is planning to close its Revenue and Customs Digital Technology Services (RCDTS) Ltd company.

It has indicated that it plans to complete the change by March 2023, building up its in-house capability to take closer control of its IT strategy.

The department is taking the step as part of its Technology Sourcing Programme, under which it is moving away from major IT contracts and developing a new technology supply chain model. This is aimed at remediating its technical debt, reducing risk in the IT estate and providing more flexibility for the future.

An HMRC spokesperson said: “To support improved services for all our customers, HMRC is taking more control of its IT strategy and estate, ensuring we have the right capabilities in house, supplemented by buying in standardised IT services from a more diverse range of partners.

“We’ve announced to employees of Revenue and Customs Digital Technology Services (RCDTS) Ltd, a company set up and wholly owned by HMRC, that they will either transfer into HMRC, enhancing our in-house technical capability, or move with their work to commercial partners where they will continue to support the department.

“Once these moves are complete, we plan to close the company by March 2023.”

RCDTS is a non-profit making company with an arm’s length relationship with HRMC. It has over 750 employees according to the department’s annual accounts for 2020-21.

Union's caution

The indication that staff will be transferred in-house or to commercial partners has prompted the Public and Commercial Services Union to express caution over how the plan could be implemented. It said it preparing guidance for members on the process.

HMRC’s plan has similarities with a step by the Department for Work and Pensions in September 2020 to consolidates it BPDTS tech services company with its DWP Digital function. It said this was aimed at creating a simpler and stronger digital offering.

Image from iStock, claudiodivizia

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