arturas kerdokas - Fotolia

CTS director Iain Patterson leaves GDS

Common Technology Services director Iain Patterson is the latest in a long line of senior leaders to leave the Government Digital Service

Director of Common Technology Services (CTS) Iain Patterson is leaving the Government Digital Service (GDS) after less than 18 months in the role. 

Patterson, who returned to GDS in December 2015 after a stint as chief technology officer at the DVLA, is the latest GDS director to step down since director-general Kevin Cunnington took over the reins of the organisation during summer 2016.

A GDS spokesman confirmed Patterson’s departure and added: “We would like to thank him for his valued contribution and wish him success in the future.”

Other significant departures in the past year include former GDS CTO Andy Beale; former director of the Verify identity assurance programme and head of strategy, policy and departmental engagement, Janet Hughes; and director of data, Paul Maltby. 

recent freedom of information (FOI) request shows that the leadership team at GDS has gone through significant changes recently. In fact, only one of those represented on the leadership team that was in place as of 31 March 2016 still remains. 

As part of the £450m budget GDS was given in the 2015 spending review,  it’s expected to deliver a total of £3.5bn in savings from GDS programmes. During his time at GDS, Patterson was in charge of the government’s CTS programme, which is projected to deliver £1.1bn of those savings. 

As part of the work, CTS built a cross-government IT contract dashboard, currently in a beta testing stage. 

In a blog post earlier this year, Patterson said the dashboard will be expanded to “record the technology, capability and change portfolio across government”. 

“These will help us understand why departments are requesting money to spend on their IT, the impact of the changes they want to make, and to help prevent them building or buying something which is available elsewhere in government,” he said. 

A National Audit Office (NAO) report published in April 2017 called on GDS to redefine its role as the government moves into a new phase of digital transformation.

Read more on IT for government and public sector