Whitehall's highest-paid chief information officers - do they earn more than their bosses?

Chief information officer: Steve Lamey

Title: Chief Information Officer and Director General, HM Revenue and Customs.

Salary: £240,000 to £245,000 in the year 2006-7, according to the department’s annual report which is published this month.

How does this compare with his boss’s salary? The permanent head of HM Revenue and Customs earned between £170,000 and £180,000. The other board directors earned less than £200,000.

Annual IT-related spend (latest figure available): £989m

Some key tasks: Modernise an IT estate that is heavily dependent on Fujitsu “VME” mainframes dating back decades; gaining an overview of the tax affairs of 30 million Pay As You Earn taxpayers; clearing discrepancies in millions of tax records; ironing out inconsistent working practices among 100,000 staff; reduce billions of pounds of tax credit overpayments; tackle fraud and error which auditors say is “unacceptably high”. His work so far is praised by even critics of the Revenue’s cost-cutting policies.

When joined: October 2004 on a four-year contract

CV highlights: Graduated in mining engineering at University College Cardiff in 1978. He became BOC’s Director of Global Information and Management User Services and later became the CIO at British Gas.

Chief information officer: Joe Harley

Title: IT Director General and Chief Information Officer, Department for Work and Pensions

Salary: £249,000 according to the latest figures available.

How does this compare with his boss’s salary? The permanent head of the department earned the equivalent of £208,000.

Annual IT-related spend (latest figure available): £1.14bn

Some key tasks: Modernise Whitehall’s biggest department in a £3bn programme that includes more than 90 IT-based projects; manage the Customer Information System that is to become the ID cards National Identity Register database; tackle an estimated £2.5bn that has been lost to fraud and error, according to Sir John Bourn, the Comptroller and Auditor General, who has qualified the department’s accounts 18 years running. Estimated losses have, however, been cut by £2.7bn in the past year. Sir John Bourn said in a National Audit Office report on the DWP, which published on 25 July 2007: “The Department has made real progress in introducing new systems and procedures that both reduce fraud and error and properly value and record identified debts.” He paid tribute to the “leadership evident within the Department in tackling these issues”.

When joined: July 2004 on a five-year contract

CV highlights: Educated at the University of Paisley. Global IT Vice President for British Petroleum, and later CIO at ICI Paints where he was responsible for all aspects of the global IT function across some 50 countries.

Chief information officer: Richard Granger

Title: Director General of NHS IT; Chief Executive of NHS Connecting for Health

Salary: £270,000 to 285,000, according to the latest figures available

How does this compare with his boss’s salary? The Chief Executive of the NHS earned £225,000 to £230,000.

Annual IT-related spend (latest figure available for NHS): £1.4bn

Some key tasks: Lead the National Programme for IT[ NPfIT], a £12.4bn modernisation scheme for the NHS; manage contracts with outsourcing suppliers worth £6.2bn; oversee the introduction of systems that make it easier for hundreds of thousands of NHS staff to improve the care and treatment of patients. Last year the National Audit Office found that “substantial progress” had been made on the NPfIT. The report commended NHS Connecting for Health for its “tight control of the central aspects of the programme”.

When joined: 7 October 2002 (has resigned and is due to leave by end of 2007)

CV highlights: Partner at Deloitte Consulting; worked on the successful procurement and delivery of a number of large scale IT programmes including the Congestion Charging Scheme for London.


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