Pito faces two years of uncertainty

The Police IT Organisation could have to wait another two years before its future becomes clear.

The Police IT Organisation could have to wait another two years before its future becomes clear. 

The organisation, which is charged with steering national police IT systems and strategy, was slammed in an independent Home Office report last month.

The Report of the Review of Pito said the organisation should be scrapped. "The present structure and organisation of police ICT lacks clear definition or purpose, results in confused lines of responsibility and is almost certainly poor value for money," it said. 

The report recommended transferring Pito's responsibilities to the National Police Improvement Agency (NPIA), an organisation whose constitution and remit is still under discussion.  

By 2007 a national police IT group within the NPIA would  take on key areas of Pito's work. The changes are needed as local forces do not accept Pito's direction, the report said. 

"The NPIA proposals and the proposals in this report have come at a time when the organisation and the people within it have already experienced a lengthy period of uncertainty. Yet the proposals are likely to require legislation to bring them into effect, leading to a degree of uncertainty for at least another two years," it said.

Eric Woods, programme director at analyst firm Ovum, said the period of uncertainty over Pito's future could make it difficult for the organisation to move forward on projects.

"It is important for Pito's management to maintain momentum and make sure it does not become held in stasis for two years. That is going to be key to morale."

A spokesman for the Home Office said Pito would continue with its on-going projects and the Home Office would be keeping Pito "closely informed" about developments.

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