First set of annual accounts for BPDTS Ltd reveal that company delivered more than £12m of IT services to department in first four months of existence
Credit: John Stillwell/PA Archive/PA Images
The Department for Work and Pensions’ in-house it company has appointed a new chief executive, in the shape of former Ministry of Justice common platform programme director Loveday Ryder.
Ryder will start her new post as boss of BPDTS Ltd on 22 January, and is replacing Ray Long, who is retiring from the civil service. According to her LinkedIn profile, Ryder has been with the MoJ for more than 11 years. Before becoming a civil servant she worked for various management-consultancy firms.
“I am delighted to be joining BPDTS Ltd at such an exciting time and am looking forward to working with the board and new colleagues to build on the great progress that has been made during the first year,” she said. “In partnership with DWP Digital, we will continue to transform digital services so they are quicker and more efficient for the millions of people that use them.”
BPDTS – whose name stands for Benefits Pension Digital and Technology Services – was established in 2016 to take over the delivery of a number digital services that DWP previously outsourced to HPE. In two tranches that took place in December 2016 and March 2017, about 380 staff from the IT firm were transferred to the newly incorporated government company (GovCo) under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) regulations. The majority of staff – and any contractors who are employed by BPDTS when required – are based in Newcastle or Blackpool.
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DWP is BPDTS’s only customer, and workers employed by the company work with DWP digital employees to deliver a number of the department’s core digital services for citizens.
The first set of annual accounts for BPDTS, which were published just before Christmas, explained that the DWP took the decision to insource services to a GovCo following a successful example set by HM Revenue and Customs in the work it has done to bring back in house the services previously covered by its Aspire contract with Capgemini and Fujitsu.
“For a number of years there has been a growing concern within government over the ability to attract and retain specialist digital staff, and to gain better management control of the design, development, and running of digital services, underpinning many core services and processes,” BPDTS said.
“To better manage and improve this position, HMRC established a new government company which would provide information technology services. The DWP followed this model, drawing on HMRC’s experience.”
The loss of valuable technology skills to private sector firms that can, typically, offer better pay, is a common complaint across the public sector. But government companies are not bound by the strictures of civil-service pay grades. Employees transferred under TUPE will also have retained the salary and other terms of their previous employment.
“The transfer of these specialist skills and services to BPDTS enables the company to provide a dedicated collaborative service to the DWP Digital Group, where BPDTS will design, build, and maintain digital, data, and technology solutions that support the DWP’s strategic aims and objectives and, most importantly, support the lives and needs of millions of our citizens,” said BPDTS, in its accounts.
It added: “In addition to the transfer of technically skilled digital staff, BPDTS has ensured that its staff have had access to the necessary tools and working environment to enable them to bring their skills to bear.”
In its first four months in existence, from the beginning of December 2016 to the end of March 2017, BPDTS delivered IT services worth £12.1m.