To ask the Minister for Social Protection the progress made in providing a new computer software programmes for the delivery and administration of direct payment social welfare schemes; if all schemes will be administered via a single platform; if she would outline the co-operation and information exchange that takes place between her Department’s IT system and that of Revenue. – Seán Kyne.
R E P L Y
My Department has, over a considerable number of years, made extensive use of a number of computer systems to administer social welfare schemes and to provide payments to its clients. For the past number of years, it has been engaged in a multi-year Service Delivery Modernisation Programme designed to deliver a high quality, proactive service to our clients. As part of that process a new computing platform, known as the Business Object Model implementation (BOMi), is continuously being developed and implemented. Approximately 80% of all claims administered by the Department are currently managed on the BOMi.
In response to the introduction of Local Property Tax earlier this year, the Department developed new facilities on the BOMi to process all payments, including those for claims administered on other systems. It was then in a position to apply deductions to certain of those schemes in accordance with social policy and legal constraints.
It is intended, over time and as resources permit, that all schemes will be administered and paid from the BOMi platform. The system is facilitating the transformation programme which is currently underway within the Department and it also enables information to be shared and services to be provided to other Departments and agencies.
The Department and the Revenue Commissioners co-operate very closely on matters of common interest and information has been exchanged electronically on a regular basis regarding clients, earnings data, employment status, DSP claims and payments and control information. This information is exchanged at varying intervals (e.g. weekly, monthly, yearly) depending on the business processes involved. Bi-lateral groups exist at various levels which meet regularly to review co-operation between both organisations and implement improvements, including new exchanges of data between the two organisations, as requirements are identified.