back to article BT problems impact Department for Work and Pensions services

Users trying to get through to the Child Maintenance Service have been unable to do so for the past two days because of problems with BT. A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), which is responsible for the agency, said the department has been suffering some difficulties "caused by problems experienced by …

  1. Your alien overlord - fear me

    It's just a friendly warning from BT not to break up their contract.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Nobody said anything about giving the work to other people. Just breaking up the contracts.

      I'm sure for BT, 10 x £11.1m still equals £111m.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They just need someone to reboot their home hub.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ironically that is probably half the problem. When our exchange went down (BT had told us that on the first call), every subsequent call for updates resulted in the BT service rep attempting to reboot the Home Hub remotely, despite being told every time I replaced it with a Netgear router and I was checking on the progress of the repair of the known-to-be-faulty exchange.

  3. wyatt

    Sometimes having the tightest SLA in the world won't help resolve some problems. Single points of failure/very technical issues will always take longer, having a supplier who can't respond to faults though.. that's a different matter all together (not saying that this is the case here).

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Perhaps a navvy with a digger severed the cable.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Perhaps a navvy with a digger severed the cable.

        Happened to use (well not exactly directly a digger/cable interface, more a 'digger dropping lots of heavy spoil on to of the BT conduit, collapsing it and severing our fibre).

        Since we also had ISDN30 over that cable (as well as our primary data) out went the telephone system..

        It was nice and quiet. Apart from all the emails coming in via our (much slower and longer) backup link.

        1. theblackhand

          Poker...

          When playing network or telecoms poker, a clumsy excavator beats pretty much any hand.

          Except for TWO clumsy excavators...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How will more companies make it any better

    Doubt having more companies will make government IT any better, will just become more expensive and drawn out with companies blaming each other and nothing actually getting done.

    Bad enough at it is with the large companies involved, cant imagine what it will be like when having to deal with loads of companies, bureaucratic nightmare.

    1. TheWeenie

      Re: How will more companies make it any better

      Doubt having more companies will make government IT any better, will just become more expensive and drawn out with companies blaming each other and nothing actually getting done.

      Surely, in the eyes of the bureaucracy, that is making things better?

      More employees in procurement, contract management, supplier relationship roles...and think of all the new forms and processes they'll be able to create!

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What about their IT?

    I recently took CMS to Tribunal and won as they were incorrectly disallowing my work-place pension (and have done for over a year).

    It's now nearly two months since they received notification from the court that I had won, but they've only been able to issue updated paperwork demanding I make higher payments :-(

    When I queried it, I was told they "have to put numbers in and see what happens" as there is no way to apply a correction to the deemed income. They went on "if we can't get the numbers right we have to refer the case to an external supplier to make alterations". Anyone know who that is? Sounds like the system isn't fit for purpose. Mind you, that applies to the CMS in general...

  6. Blotto Bronze badge

    Not just the DWP looking to break large contracts into smaller ones, large parts of Government see it as a way to save cash, also sticking as much of their crap in the cloud as possible is seen as a positive move.

    They no longer have the in house skills to manage their IT, having long ago decided they are not IT shops and IT is better managed by IT companies with SLA's that upper management can hold to account.

    Its a bit like the NHS and its key targets and stats that just skew the delivery of care to try and satisfy the numbers rather than deliver real patient care.

    Government PM's and managers are no match for the sales bods in the giant outsources who promise the earth and deliver little, charging more in consultancy and products to deliver on the promise the agencies thought they where gaining, often at the expense of working solutions.

    Companies often earn more out of failures to deliver than they do when they deliver on time and on budget.

  7. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
    Megaphone

    "Our staff are working closely with BT to resolve this"

    translation... "we're still on hold to India"

  8. Kevin Johnston

    I bet the system has 'Smart' somewhere in the blurb sent to the users to say how awesome it is, probably got 'Resilient' too.

  9. Tromos
    Joke

    Child Maintenance Service

    Have you tried switching it off then on again?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Child Maintenance Service

      Seriously - please DON'T switch it back on again. It's very, very broken.

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