Feeds

CSA boss falls on sword over £456m IT system fiasco

EDS: 'badly designed, badly developed, badly tested, badly implemented'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The boss of the Child Support Agency has been forced out by the abject failure of its computer system supplied by EDS.

Doug Smith, chief executive of the CSA, left his post yesterday but insisted to MPs that the situation would have even worse but for the actions he has taken. He said senior management had done their best to shield clients from the worst impact of the failed system. The CSA has paid £456m for a system which is still not working. Work and pensions secretary Alan Johnson said he would take a final decision on whether to keep the system in place or chuck it out within the next few weeks. The system should deal with child support payments made by absent parents.

Johnson said the system was: "improving to the degree that makes it difficult to decide whether to use the nuclear option" but it was "not working well enough frankly to discount that", according to the FT. The system should have been up and running last April, that date has now been pushed back to spring next year.

In an internal EDS document, revealed yesterday to a House of Commons Select Committee, the firm described the system as "badly designed, badly developed, badly tested, badly implemented".

Problems include difficulties moving cases from the old system to the new one - 750,000 cases are still on the old system. Waiting times are now nearer five months than the agency target of six weeks. Back in April, MPs heard that the cost of processing each application was 20 per cent higher than under the old system.

Sir Archy Kirkwood, chair of the committee, said it was wrong to blame EDS alone. He said: "This is a systematic, chronic failure of management across the agency.", according to the FT. ®

Related stories

MPs slam government over EDS secrecy
UK govt IT an 'appalling waste' of public money
UK gov holds EDS to account over crap CSA system

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data
European corps can't afford to get complacent while American Big Biz battles Uncle Sam
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.