The UK government pulled the plug on a £27mn post-Brexit border software contract with US data analytics company Palantir because of “budget pressures”, according to transparency disclosures.

How often have we seen a successful POC or MVP delivered, meeting all the measurable objectives, only for an insurer to decide to build in-house.  

The outcome is often delay or even the project is not delivered at all. Not to mention costing more.

This seems to be the case here with the £ 27 million cost of the project contracted with Palantir.

The UK’s public spending watchdog last month said delays would in part push up the costs of the project to build a post-Brexit trade border to at least £4.7bn.  That might not be comparing apples and pears. The former will be for software, SI, consulting, and implementation costs. The latter must include many non-system costs but even so demonstrates the necessity of upping the quality of procurement management. In projects I have been involved in I have had to include OPEX on top of CAPEX costs for at least five years out from initial deployment when analysing ROI and viability.

This example also shows a yawning gap between government,  public sector procurement and that for the private sector including, of course, insurers.

£27 million for the border software contract and £330 million to develop a patient data platform for the NHS? That is similar to the costs of deploying the core system gorillas in the market which seemed acceptable in the early 21st century and still are the core of insurers systems today. 

A new generation of MACH-architected core platforms, policy admin systems, and point solution software is changing the economics of systems procurement. More bang per buck and faster to deploy and deliver value.

About time.