Iain Patterson, the chief technology officer at the DVLA, is heading back to the centre of government to take on a new role ensuring “consistent, high quality workplace IT for civil servants”, it has been announced.
Patterson, who was seconded to the driver agency from the Government Digital Service team in 2013, will make the move back to GDS in January, becoming Whitehall’s director of common technology services.
Announcing the move, civil service chief technology officer Liam Maxwell said GDS – which received a £450m boost at last month’s Spending Review – was “delighted” to welcome Patterson back to the centre.
“In his new role at GDS Iain will be responsible for enabling the provision of consistent, high quality workplace IT for civil servants across government,” said Maxwell.
“This will deliver benefits through better, more secure IT, more joined-up working across government, and the ability to implement changes faster and at lower cost.”
While at DVLA, Patterson (pictured) oversaw plans to bring the agency’s IT estate – and staff – back in-house after decades of reliance on outsourcing firms.
Speaking to PublicTechnology’s sister magazine Civil Service World in September, Patterson stressed the need for a “healthy tension” between GDS and the departments as government continues to refine its approach to technology.
“It’s fair to say technology vendors have successfully managed, over decades, to disaggregate government in a way where they can sell the same things over and over to different departments in a slightly different or customised way, prolonging their longevity within that contract space,” he said. “We decided that we would break the mould in DVLA because we felt it was possible.”