Public Services

Andy Nelson appointed DWP chief information officer

Charlotte Jee Published 06 February 2013

Nelson to oversee the start of Universal Credit among other welfare reforms


Andy Nelson, who is currently chief information officer (CIO) at the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and government CIO, has been appointed CIO at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

Following days of speculation, it has now been formally confirmed that Nelson will become DWP CIO. The position became vacant after the previous CIO Philip Langsdale sadly passed away late last year.

The move, which was approved by the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith with the Prime Minister's agreement, will see Nelson take responsibility for implementing wide-ranging changes to the welfare system.

Permanent Secretary at the DWP, Robert Devereux, said, "I am delighted to welcome Andy Nelson to the Department as we make our welfare reforms a reality, including the imminent start of Universal Credit, the Personal Independence Payment and the Benefit Cap. Mr Nelson's wealth of experience prior to him joining the Civil Service, together with his recent role in the Ministry of Justice and as Government CIO place him in a unique position to help us as we enter a critical period in the transformation of the welfare system."

Regarding his appointment, Nelson said, "I am delighted to be taking on the role of DWP CIO and look forward to working with the Secretary of State, Robert Devereux and the team at DWP in delivering the transformation of the welfare system."

According to a DWP spokesperson, a decision is yet to be made as to whether Nelson will stay on as government CIO, and the issue is currently being considered by the Cabinet Office.

Nelson joined the MoJ in 2009, where he was responsible for establishing an improved IT service. As government CIO, a role he took up in April 2012, Nelson has been heavily involved in the government's development of cloud computing, particularly through the G-Cloud programme.

Nelson joined the civil service as MoJ CIO in September 2009 directly from the private sector, where he has held a number of roles in IT and change management, including positions with Andersen Consulting, Asda, Price Waterhouse's management consultancy division and RSA Insurance.

Commenting on the appointment, Adam Thilthorpe, Director of Professionalism, BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, said, "Congratulations to Andy Nelson on his new appointment. This is an incredibly important role and Andy is a natural fit with a proven multi-sector record of delivery. The success of the DWP, and of course the universal credits programme, is critical for allowing the Government to effectively and productively govern in this digital age.

"It is also essential that the excellent work that Andy has led for IT Capability across government departments under the guise of government CIO continues."

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