Councils increasing IT outsourcing

Councils increasing IT outsourcing

Local authorities across the UK are set to increase their IT outsourcing strategies in order to reduce manpower and running costs.

That is the main finding of new research, which surveyed 267 council chief executive officers to find that 51 per cent of public authorities expect to outsource more of their IT services – a significant rise on the ten per cent recorded at the same point in 2013.

Another seven per cent of respondents said they believed all of their services would be outsourced at some point in the future, while a further five per cent said that number would be between eight and ten per cent.    

There is subsequently a noticeably overwhelming shift in such strategies, with only 16 per cent of the respondents expecting councils to take services in-house.

One of the main reasons cited by experts is the desire to cut costs, with IT seen as something of a prime target.

Indeed, the first three months of the year saw local governments increase their spending on IT outsourcing by 58 per cent.

According to Computer Weekly, one respondent said: "It is unlikely that you would see all IT outsourced, because you do not want to outsource your ability to plan for the future of IT.

"The role of the IT department will be to decide what you outsource, who you outsource to, and how that will affect your business."

He added that most of today's applications were made available through the cloud, with technology from different suppliers often working together, making it easier for those services to be outsourced, which in turn helped local authorities to save money.

A recent survey commissioned by the Local Government Association, produced by consultancy Drummond MacFarlane, found that five local authorities saved £31 million by moving to shared services arrangements over the course of a five-year period.