Sunday, 16 December 2007

DII: another MoD/EDS fiasco

The Defence Information Infrastructure, the largest single government IT contract was awarded in 2005 to the Atlas consortium led by EDS, the Labour Government's favourite IT supplier. The £4billion contract was no doubt awarded to EDS because of its track-record; after all, EDS has been responsible for implementing such other great IT successes as the systems for the Child Support Agency, Inland Revenue Tax Credits Department, the Passport Office and the NHS.
Despite these and other contracts being such unmitigated disasters, costing the British tax payers £millions in contract overruns, technical failures and loss of service, the Government and the MoD, thought: what the hell, good old EDS must get a system right sometime, perhaps this will be it. But no, not this time either.
A recent investigation by Channel 4 and Computer Weekly (see video below) has discovered that the project is not only running behind schedule and not working properly, but is also likely to cost an extra £1billion - that's right an extra £1billion!

"The failures are across the range. They can include things like the system being too slow, it actually not working, things that have been promised haven't materialised." The MoD has admitted that the plans for implementing DII have changed no less than 22 times and Channel 4 News was shown evidence suggesting the project is now some eighteen months behind schedule.
"Unfortunately the people who suffer are the taxpayer, MoD people who want to do their job and can't, and potentially our front-line military personnel"; the latter especially when failures in such elements as the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System means troops are not receiving the appropriate level of support.
The troops are also losing out because the extra £billion could have been spent on new and improved equipment, better accommodation, improved health care, etc.
Still at least Labour's friends at EDS are laughing all the way to the bank.
Link Computer Weekly: MoD's £5bn DII hits major problems
Link Channel 4: MoD system: 'unmitigated disaster'