Large government IT projects subject to new controls

Big government projects will be subject to tough controls under the Major Projects Authority (MPA), Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude says.

Big government projects will be subject to tough controls under the Major Projects Authority (MPA), Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude (pictured) says.

The MPA was created in March as a partnership between the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury to oversee large-scale projects funded and delivered by central government. The new announcements lay down a series of controls, such as the ability to intervene directly in failing projects.

Maude says: "Previously government projects have had a poor delivery record. There was no cross-governmental understanding of the size and cost of the government's Major Project portfolio, and projects often began with no agreed budget, no business case and unrealistic delivery timetables."

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander says the establishment of the MPA marks an important step in preventing cost overruns. "By bringing together financial, commercial and project management expertise, I believe it will help us deliver successful projects on time and on budget," he said.

The MPA will:

• Compile a government portfolio of major projects and report publicly on them once a year

• Agree the plan for every project's assurance and approval requirements at its inception

• Undertake assurance at key stages in the lifecycle of projects to assess whether they will deliver on time, within budget and to the required level of quality

• Intervene directly, where appropriate, in any failing major projects

• Work directly with departments to build capability in projects and programme management.

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