James Hall, the Accenture executive responsible for the firm’s £2bn contract with the NHS’s National Programme for IT, has been appointed as the first chief executive of the Identity and Passport Service.
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Hall will be responsible for £5.8bn ID card programme – currently on hold pending a review as part of a “root and branch” examination of the Home Office’s policies and programmes.
He will also be responsible for the work of the passport service, where the recent collapse of a new online application service – revealed in July – and the forthcoming introduction of biometric passports will present challenges ahead.
Hall is not a stranger to the difficulties of major public sector IT programmes – earlier this year Accenture announced a £260m write-off on its 10-year NPfIT contracts, predicting substantial losses on NHS work for the next three years.
His career at Accenture and its predecessor organisations began in 1976. In 1994, he was appointed managing partner for the firm in the UK, a post he held until 2000. He then spent five years as managing partner with responsibility for technology and systems integration across Accenture, before heading up Accenture’s NPfIT work.
Hall, who takes up his post on 11 October, will replace the IPS’s interim chief executive, Alan Barnish.
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