GDS adds millions to supplier contracts as One Login project enters ‘critical time’

Value of trio of technical and support deals is raised 

Credit: Piqsels

As work to deliver the new One Login system enters a “critical time”, the Government Digital Service has added millions of pounds in value to three contracts covering the provision of technical and support services to the project.

A cumulative £7.26m has been added to the value of trio of deals, which are now worth a total of £23.1m. This represents an overall rise of 46% on the originally intended spending of £15.75m.

The largest of these is a deal with Deloitte to serve as the primary “delivery partner” of professional services for the One Login programme. The engagement came into effect on 24 March and runs for a term of two years, during which the consultancy firm will provide GDS with “whole or partial multi-disciplined digital delivery teams to work on outcomes” specified in individual statements of work. 

These teams are required at about 5-10 working days’ notice, and the supplier is also expected to help ensure “sustainable in-house capability to further extend and run services post-contract end”, according to procurement documents.

Although it still has more than 16 months left to run, GDS has already acted to increase its planned spending via the deal by more than a third of its original value of £9m – a figure which has now been raised to £12.3m.

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Another contract with Deloitte – for the creation of a native mobile app through which the One Login system will digitally verify users’ identity – has also seen a significant increase in its budget. The two-year deal commenced on 10 February and was originally valued at £4.8m. This has risen by 50% to £7.2m, according to newly published procurement information.

This contract is similar in scope to the delivery partner deal, with the supplier providing teams to deliver objectives set out periodic statements of work, while also being expected to “support GDS in growing its permanent engineering capability in native app development”.

The third contract which has received a seven-figure spending increase is an 18-month engagement that took effect in September 2021. The deal with tech consultancy Hippo Digital was put in place to provide GDS with services to help “develop and implement the architecture and technical elements of the service, and support service migration”.

This contract, which includes tech recruitment specialist LA International as a key subcontractor, is due to conclude on 31 March 2023. As this date grows nearer, an extra £1.56m million has been added to the deal’s value, taking its total worth to £3.51m.

“It is a critical time for the programme and the buyer requires the Supplier to continue providing teams for outcome-based pieces of work,” said GDS in an updated procurement notice. “The current contract value is nearly exhausted, and we therefore wish to uplift the value to continue delivery during this critical time.”

One Login is intended to provide a single digital system through which citizens can access a comprehensive range of services delivered by departments across government. It will replace an existing patchwork of about 200 accounts currently in use, incorporating 44 different sign-in methods.

The first five services recently went live with One Login on a pilot basis. The government-wide digital and data strategy – dubbed Transforming for a digital future – published earlier this year sets out a commitment that “all departments will confirm an adoption strategy and roadmap for One Login… by April 2023, and their services will have begun onboarding by 2025.”


Sam Trendall

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