Public Services > Central Government

CTS director Iain Patterson to leave GDS

David Bicknell Published 12 May 2017

Director of Common Technology Services set to move on after nearly 18 months at the Government Digital Service


Iain Patterson, the Government Digital Service’s (GDS) director of Common Technology Services is understood to be leaving the organisation.

A Cabinet Office spokesperson said, "We can confirm that Iain Patterson is leaving GDS. We would like to thank him for his valued contribution and wish him success in the future."

Patterson re-joined GDS early in 2016, having been seconded to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) as chief technology officer (CTO) in 2013. There have been some rumours recently that Patterson was coming to the end of his time at GDS, but until now, there was no formal confirmation of this.

In his role as director of Common Technology Services (CTS) Patterson has been responsible for enabling the provision of better quality workplace IT for civil servants across government. His goal was to deliver benefits for civil servants through better, more secure IT, more joined-up working across government, and the ability to implement changes faster and at lower cost. Cabinet Office insiders say Patterson has done "great work across government."

In a blog earlier this year , Patterson discussed some CTS work around making a common case for exiting IT contracts.

He said, “In Common Technology Services (CTS) we’re working with departments to provide the ‘right’ technology for Civil Servants. In most cases, this technology can be built or purchased once and then used many times across multiple departments.

“Unfortunately, the main barrier that prevents departments from investing in these solutions is the contract landscape. Many still have large, legacy contracts using system integrators which affect their ability to change their technology estate. They’re faced with costly change control requests and complicated workarounds to link up cloud-based commodity solutions with their existing technology.”

There are several senior IT and digital positions vacant in Whitehall, not least Sarah Wilkinson’s role as chief digital, data and technology officer at the Home Office – Wilkinson is heading to NHS Digital as chief executive – and Mark Dearnley’s old chief digital and information officer job at HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). It is possible that Patterson could be considered for one of these roles.  As well as his experience at DVLA, Patterson has previously been a transformation lead at the Post Office and it is more likely that his destination now is the private sector.

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