Brown hopes range of IT efficiency measures will save £3bn

The government has announced a raft of measures to save money and increase efficiency using technology.

It wants all public services to go online by...

The government has announced a raft of measures to save money and increase efficiency using technology.

It wants all public services to go online by 2014, greater access to public data and less money spent on big IT projects.

The money saved will go towards improved frontline services, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said this morning.

There will be £3bn extra savings on top of the £9bn efficiency savings identified in the Budget this year.

Moving services online will save £400m over three years and the government also says it will also reduce spend on IT projects by "making greater use of existing systems rather than creating new ones".

It will move highly-paid civil servants from London and the South East to cheaper parts of the UK. Spending on consultancy will drop 50% and on marketing and communications by 25%, saving £650m.

Greater access to public data will, the government hopes, increase efficiency through services like the recently announced online crime maps of areas. The Putting the Frontline First report says, "Data can also be used in innovative ways that bring economic benefits to citizens and businesses by releasing untapped enterprise and entrepreneurship. Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt predict a significant increase in economic growth if more publicly held data are released for reuse."

There are also plans for a potential "public-sector shared-service company." The government wants to expand the current most successful shared service centres, saying, "A specialist company of this kind could then offer services across the public sector, providing a platform for public organisations to transform their back offices more easily to reach private-sector benchmarking levels."

Gordon Brown said, "Today, inspired by the opportunities new technology offers us and aware of not just the technological but the demographic economic and fiscal challenges ahead, I want to set out how in the next few years we will accept our responsibilities for good government - and not walk away from our responsibilities; and how we will empower patients, parents, pupils and citizens in new ways with better more personal more interactive services that put them, the users, in charge."

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