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Government Announces More Efficient ICT Strategy

In a statement released on Wednesday, Cabinet office minister Francis Maude explained the failure of monolithic IT projects, and government strategy to improve efficiency involving cloud computing and open-source IT.

According to reports, around £16bn was spent on IT between 2008 and 2009 by the labour government. A spending spree that the coalition government aims to recover by managing a series of measures to cut costs and reduce the size of its IT projects.

"For too long, government has wasted vast amounts of money on ineffective and duplicate IT systems," said Maude. "We need to ensure that frontline services have the tools to do their job to deliver effective public services."

Under the government's strategy, it is aiming to become a 'single intelligent procurer of ICT', and will develop a procurement process especially designed to make it much more easier for innovative SMEs to obtain government contracts. The government is also likely to publish guidance within six months on prerequisites for IT projects worth over £100m.

The ongoing plans for shrinking the government's IT outgoings also includes a shift towards cloud computing. Developing a desktop prototype for the cloud is one of the items on the list of plans drawn up by the government.

A cloud computing strategy is likely to be introduced somewhere within the next 6 months. In addition, the Cabinet Office has appointed Tom Loosemore, who led the consolidation of the BBC's websites, to cut the number of government websites.

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