Steria Limited, a provider of IT-enabled business services, has been selected by the Cabinet Office to lead Shared Services Connected (SSCL), a joint venture which will transform the way that shared back office services are delivered across the public sector.
The venture forms part of the government's Next Generation Shared Services (NGSS) programme, which is a key element of the Civil Service Reform agenda for a more cost-effective and unified Civil Service.
The contract is potentially worth in excess of £1bn over 10 years and the transformation of the government's back office functions is expected to deliver between £400 and £600 million per annum for the UK taxpayer.
Through SSCL, Steria will work in partnership with the government to consolidate existing service centres for DWP, Defra, the Environment Agency and in scope services of UK SBS. SSCL will enable economies of scale, the adoption of common processes and systems, and continuous improvement in the range and quality of services offered to its customers.
SSCL will be a UK tax-paying business that will contribute to growth and job creation in this country. It will be an independent joint venture between Steria Limited (75%) and the Government (25%).
The venture will serve up to 160,000 current users across 13 different public sector organisations. Approximately 1,200 staff who currently work in the delivery centres for DWP, Defra and EA, will transfer to the new company and UK SBS is expected to join by 2015.
Francis Maude, minister for the Cabinet Office, commented: "Steria Limited has set out a compelling vision for how they will work with us to help government deliver back office functions more efficiently and, ultimately, more competitively. A key part of the Civil Service Reform plan is making government more unified, and enabling civil servants to focus on delivering exceptional public services.
"It makes sense for government departments, agencies and public bodies to share services and pool expertise, so that hard-working taxpayers don't have to foot the bill for duplicate services. Instead they will be able to focus on providing services rather than managing back office functions. This is a great partnership which will promote the kind of growth that sees profits delivered back to the taxpayer and will help Britain compete in the global race."