Nigel is the Head of Product Management & Innovation for Northgate Public Services. In the past 9 years, he has helped to make its Revenues and Benefits application the best and market leading solution (45% share). The success of the product is down to investing in a browser based front end (live at all customer sites since 2009), innovation and close working with customers. This work has lead to the generation of a foundation layer that has now been successfully introduced into central government firstly at the Insolvency Service (for processing of redundancy payments) and more recently at the Department for Transport (a national database for blue badge). It is now being used to map out the new benefits landscape that is emerging from the welfare reform programme.
Northgate has significant experience in creating and maintaining core IT solutions which calculate eligibility and entitlement. For example, our Revenues and Benefits application is the market leader, is used by 172 Local Authorities and last year handled over 3 million benefit claims and paid out £6.5bn in Housing Benefit (50% of the national total). The activity associated with these volumes is significant. The core system is accessed daily by over 10,000 end users as well as thousands of trusted third parties and members of the public.
The customers using this system include some of the largest local authorities in the UK including Birmingham, Liverpool, Edinburgh and the Northern Ireland Housing Executive. These customers consistently deliver the best performance in the country as evidenced by the Department of Work & Pensions’ quarterly Speed of Processing performance indicators.
Northgate is playing a significant role in helping its customers implement the government’s welfare reform programme. This includes the introduction of Council Tax Support, reforms to Housing Benefit (including its transition to Universal Credit) and the devolvement of significant parts of the Social Fund from DWP to Local Authority control.