Feeds

No IT budget for faster SME payments

Gov tightens fists

Reducing security risks from open source software

The government is not allocating funding to upgrade payment systems to meet the prime minister's commitment to pay small suppliers faster during the credit crunch.

The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR), which is coordinating payment changes to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs), said that no budget has been allocated for administrative and IT changes, but that the cost to the exchequer of bringing forward £8bn worth of payments to 10 days would be about £16m in lost or added interest.

The process of change has already begun, according to BERR, and departments are reviewing their systems with the aim of driving up their payments performance.

The prime minister told the House of Commons on 8 October 2008 that cash flow is a particular problem for small companies during this critical time for the economy. Late payment problems, Brown said, have intensified, with all firms lengthening the time they take to pay their suppliers.

"The government can ease the situation, and we can help cash flow through prompt payment. The government has already agreed to move its procurement rules from payments within 30 days to a commitment to pay as soon as possible.

"In the current climate, we need to go further with a harder targets. We will therefore aim to make SME payments within 10 days. The government will pick up the cost of that, but it is a small price to pay for greatly increasing cash flow associated with £8bn of contracts with SMEs."

A range of measures to help departments to achieve this will be introduced by BERR. They include:

  • Standard guidance to suppliers on how to submit invoices
  • Ready access to guidance within the supplier's terms and conditions and on all public facing websites
  • A common standard for establishing when an invoice is received
  • A common standard for counting elapsed days

"Most departments will also need to invest in their internal compliance procedures to ensure that managers generate purchase orders and authorise payments correctly and speedily," a spokesperson for BERR told GC News.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.