03 January 2002
Use of the purchasing card by civil servants may not reach its final savings target despite its success so far, the government has been warned.
In the fourth annual report on the card's performance, consultancy KPMG noted that the target for 2000-01 was exceeded by 7.5 per cent, to reach £161 million-worth of transactions.
However, KPMG noted that although card use had grown by 180 per cent, this was down from 295 per cent the previous year. This could indicate that civil servants are using the card enough to satisfy themselves that they are doing their job properly, it said.
KPMG warned that complacency must be avoided to meet the final goal of £300 million worth of transactions by the end of October. Savings will then reach £70 million annually.
Mike Killin, the Office of Government Commerce's acting director of e-commerce, said the savings had reached £35 million. But he described KPMG's comments as "completely fair".
Killin added: "We are redoubling our efforts to ensure the card's use."