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UK Gov Spent £185K to Recruit New Broadband CEO and Project Managers

Sunday, June 1st, 2014 (1:22 am) - Score 541

The Government’s Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) has revealed that a total of £184,591.50 was granted for a SofS approved recruitment campaign for new Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) project managers and a CEO earlier this year, which is almost as much as the chosen CEO himself will be paid (£200k per annum).

Regular readers might recall that BDUK recently went through a lengthy period where it was supposed to be reorganised around a more “commercial focus” as part of the £250m Superfast Broadband Extension Programme (i.e. the additional investment needed to help 95% of the UK gain access to a fixed superfast broadband service by 2017).

In the end this “recruitment campaign” resulted in the appointment of several new project managers and the former Commercial Director of the London 2012 Olympics Organising Committee, Christopher Townsend, becoming it’s CEO (here). But so far the effort appears to have resulted in little practical change to the overall framework, except for a token £10m Competitive Fund.

Apparently wasting tax payers money recruitment drives like this are a very expensive business because the latest DCMS spending approvals (MS Excel) for Jan – March 2014 reveal that the department ended up splashing out a staggering £185k on it and that’s just shy of the £200k that will be paid to the CEO himself. Put to better use they could have used that to help upgrade a medium sized village or two with superfast broadband.

In addition, the DCMS has also released its latest report on transactions over £25,000, which also covers the Jan – March 2014 (Q1) period and offers a bit more detail about how the funding for Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) projects has been distributed. It’s best to take the data reported for this alongside the latest quarterly BDUK broadband progress report, which was released during mid-May 2014 (here).

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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