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UKBA 'cut too many staff'

The troubled UK Border Agency has cut too many staff too quickly and is now having to hire extra people and increase overtime to meet demands, Whitehall's spending watchdog said today.

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Immigration computer system 'has caused significant problems'

The £385 million immigration case work (ICW) computer system, which aimed to improve efficiency and cut costs, has "significant problems" and, despite early successes, "has slipped by a year and is over budget", the NAO said.

The immigration computer system has caused 'significant problems' for staff

Despite less being delivered than expected, the system was £28 million (12%) over its £224 million budget by the end of March and overall expected savings had been revised down to £106 million.

Some 540 requirements, previously described as "must haves", have been removed or postponed in the latest version of the system, leading to limitations, including that customers will not be able to track their applications online.

Further staff reductions before systems such as the ICW programme are implemented "may impact negatively on performance", a risk the agency acknowledges but the impact of which it "is unable to quantify", the watchdog said.

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