IBM named as supplier for NHS HR replacement system

IBM has been named as the preferred supplier for the new NHS electronic staff record (ESR) project

IBM has been named as the preferred supplier for the new NHS electronic staff record (ESR) project – the largest HR and payroll software implementation in the world.

Subject to contract conditions the Department of Health has said IBM will become the new supplier for delivery of ESR Services from the summer of 2015.

NHS ESR programme director Paul Spooner said in a news digest that he was looking forward to establishing a partnership based delivery model with IBM.

He also said that the NHS had given essential input into the development and enhancements of ESR.

“As we go forward with the new contract, the NHS ESR programme will continue to work on behalf of, and in partnership with, NHS organisations to ensure we maintain a fit-for-purpose solution,” he said. “Together we will further modernise the service to meet the expectations of the NHS, with an objective to further support the NHS to drive operational efficiency and enhance strategic workforce capability.”

ESR covers more than 1.2 million NHS employees and is currently based on Oracle’s E-Business Suite software. 

The ESR replaced more than 30 systems previously in use. It includes functions such as recruitment, talent management, absence management, self-service and core human resources capabilities.

In June, six suppliers were shortlisted for the tender, including IBM, CSC, Atos, Tata Consultancy Services, Steria and BT/Accenture.

ESR is currently provided by McKesson, which won a £325m deal in 2001. The original contract expired on 31 August 2014, but McKesson did not bid for its replacement after selling much of its UK healthcare business to private equity firm Symphony Technology Group earlier this month.

McKesson has agreed a contract extension to November 2015.

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