Metropolitan Police HR software implementation in ‘crisis’

A £48 million system designed to overhaul the Metropolitan Police’s human resources processes is in crisis, according to reports.

The new estimated cost of the system, built by IT supplier Steria, demonstrates it will be £10 million over budget, according to a report in the Times newspaper. The system deployment is currently running at least six months late, with no definite final implementation date. It had been due to go live last December.

The system had been intended to save £15 million annually in office costs, processing wages, sick leave and holidays for the police force’s 52,000 staff. It is a key part of a £366 million efficiency programme.

Met Police commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson is so concerned by the problem that he is directly involved in emergency meetings on how to fix it, the newspaper reported. He is also taking legal advice about the Steria contract.

But the force had foreseen problems with project, the Times reported. Last year, a report to the Metropolitan Police Authority said a “highly experienced manager” had been appointed to bring “further rigour and discipline”.

A spokesperson for the Met Police said it was “a major change programme”, and that the revised budget had been agreed last year. The problem, she said, was that “the technology is not yet fully developed”.

Steria had not provided comment at the time of writing.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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