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London’s Met Police plans £600m tech overhaul

London’s Metropolitan Police Service is seeking to reform how it procures technology with a new £600m spending programme.

The plans, outlined in a procurement notice earlier this week, reveal that the force intends to bring together its six existing technology “towers” into a new “two tower model”.

All of the Met’s technology procurement will be divided between a tower covering infrastructure services such as service desk, network services and cyber security services, and a second focused exclusively on applications.

According to the tender notice, the service has a “strong preference for appointing a different supplier to each of the infrastructure and applications towers”. Officials hope this will ensure “independence between the two roles as the infrastructure supplier will be managing the application supplier to some extent”.

The contracts, which are set to replace a number of expiring deals, are estimated to be worth between £250m and £600m, the notice reveals. They are set to remain in place for an initial five-year term with two optional year-long extensions.

The process of bundling together all of the force’s infrastructure services into one tower and awarding them to a single supplier may attract criticism. In recent years there has been a wider push in the public sector to break up larger contracts into smaller ones which can be more easily be managed. But the Met’s record on technology procurement has so far been mixed. According to a report by the Register in 2016, the force had corrected or cancelled 37 IT projects worth more than £100m in recent years.

The force said in a statement: “The Pegasus Programme will deliver a service model that reflects the future needs of the MPS. It will enable agility and flexibility in our services, an improved user experience and greater value for money. The Pegasus Programme supports the MPS direction and strategy to seize the opportunities of data, digital and technology to be a world leader in policing.”