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UK Government Announces New 5-yr IT Plan (15 Nov 2005)
The government has announced that its IT strategy for the next five years will aim to achieve closer integration between IT systems and its 'shared service centres' so that data can be shared across divisions and so reduce duplication of form filling. Access to public services will also be made simpler by replacing multiple government web sites with a central 'Directgov' website. There are 1,300 separate and discrete back-office functions in the public sector.

There are riskes that the complexity of sharing data between departments will derail the strategy. A spokeman accepted there would be "cynicism" about the new strategy, but said that the government will reduce the risk of project failures through its plans to professionalise IT directors and enhance its project management skills. A new Service Transformation board will work with government IT leaders and its CIO Council to ensure common standards for new projects.

Government chief information officer Ian Watmore said details of how the strategy will be implemented will be published by March 2006, following consultation with industry and the public sector.