Home Office begins work on modern slavery statement service

Department awards £500k contract for design of digital tool

Credit: Kirsty O’Connor/PA Archive/PA Images

The Home Office has kicked off a project to design and deliver a digital service through which businesses will be required to publish modern slavery statements.

Under legislation introduced in 2015, all businesses with a yearly turnover of £36m or more are required to publish an annual statement detailing the steps they have taken to identify and eradicate the use of modern slavery anywhere in their operations or supply chain. 

Government defines modern slavery as “the recruitment, movement, harbouring or receiving of children, women or men through the use of force, coercion, abuse of vulnerability, deception or other means for the purpose of exploitation”.

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The Home Office wishes to develop a digital tool which allows modern slavery statements to be made electronically and then published online for the public to read.

In September, the department published a contract notice seeking a supplier to deliver “user research and interaction design to produce an MVP [minimum viable product] digital service” that would meet these objectives.

As per that notice, the production of the initial service was expected to take about four months, with an optional one-year extension.

The procurement call outlined that the Home Office wished to build the service on the same underlying code that supports the government’s gender pay gap reporting service.

The company that helped government construct that platform – London-based tech consultancy Cadence Innova – will also fulfil the modern slavery statement reporting service.

The firm, which was one of 15 to bid for the work, has won a contract with the Home Office worth £459,975.

The department said: “Our goal is to: support business to comply with legislation and improve the quality of annual statements; provide a trusted service that provides data to wider public in an open, easily accessible form for further scrutiny and research into modern slavery; provide a platform for HO to learn further about the impact of our policies.”


Sam Trendall

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