Public sector IT response to budget cuts

Two recent corporate-sponsored research studies published looked at the UK government’s budget cuts and their effect on public sector IT.

Virtualisation software vendor VMware commissioned polling company Comres to find out what senior public sector finance officers thought of the cuts.

It found that 61% believe that budget cuts have already impacted front-line services, and that 69% believe it will be difficult to make the spending cuts within the allotted three-year timescale.

It also asked those senior finance officers about their perception of IT. Three-quarters agreed that IT is integral to achieving the mandated budget cuts, and 83% said IT is essential for delivering shared services.

The survey found that 55% of finance officers had reduced their department’s IT budgets following the cuts. Whether the remaining 45% have the resources to ‘accelerate the transition to cloud computing’, as VMware suggested they might, is another matter.

Meanwhile, recruitment consultants Badenoch & Clark polled 1,000 public sector IT practitioners to find out what impact the cuts are having. Around a fifth of them said they expect there to be ‘sweeping’ job cuts in their department, while another fifth said the future is uncertain.

Not much can be made of Badenoch & Clark’s finding that “seven out of ten respondents said morale was either average or poor”.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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