back to article Capita scores £239M contract to manage mega public sector pension scheme

Capita has scooped up a ten-year £239 million ($298 million) contract to oversee the Civil Service Pension Scheme (CSPS) on behalf of Britain's Cabinet Office, giving the under-fire tech services biz a needed boost. The CSPS is among the UK’s largest public sector pension schemes, and is clearly comfortable with Capita’s …

  1. hoola Silver badge


    I just cannot believe that this has been approved and it shows the unbelievable level of incompetence in procurement.

    After the USS fiasco, Captia should have been immediately blocked from the process.

    We are in the crazy situation where it simply does not matter how bad these outsourcing operators are, they are still guaranteed more contracts.

    1. Steve Button Silver badge

      Re: WTF

      This is a joke, right? I've checked the calendar and it's not April 1st, perhaps there's a Black Tuesday Fool's day now?

      This can't be real.

    2. Lee D Silver badge

      Re: WTF

      It's not incompetence, it's corruption.

      They aren't dumb - they know exactly what they are doing, and getting some lovely backhanders somewhere for it. Or they have shares, or whatever.

      Nobody who was merely incompetent would be dumb enough to do this. They are instead incredibly competent, will be making money and chums hand over fist, are doing it explicitly and deliberately, and know PRECISELY that they will get away with it long enough to be profitable because there is no oversight and what oversight there is will be complicit anyway.

      Every facet of Capita's, and similar company's, work is predicated on this happening. Bids are made so that someone goes "Oh well, guess we'll have to use Capita *again*, because nobody else is bidding on this incredibly dumb, specific, doomed-to-fail, over-priced project that we change the specs to every week".

      I have to say, since passing the age 40, I've totally given up caring because there is nobody in power, or with any chance of power, that will end this. Capita etc. will continue on for centuries like this, and never be brought to account, and successions of multiple governments of all colours will all do exactly the same once they get into power too.

      It simply doesn't matter how bad these providers, or politicians, are any more. Nothing changes. Nothing ever stops. Things just move from one hive of corruption to the next.

      We've got a layer of people in charge, behind a glass ceiling, who couldn't care less and are in it only for personal profit.

      Capita was founded in 1984 with the express purpose of being this company that they are. Nothing's changed, they've just got bigger and with more fingers in more pies. In 2006 the chairman resigned because of links to donations to Labour, etc. Nothing changes. It's a personal profit machine and nobody with the power to do so will shut it down. Same for countless dozens of other quangos.

      1. RegGuy1 Silver badge

        Re: WTF

        No, no, no. Not corruption. NO. We are Ingerland and are the most honest cuntry in the world.

        It's only those johnny foreigners who is corrupt.

        Stop doing this country down.

        1. RegGuy1 Silver badge

          Re: WTF

          Forgot to add, Brexit, innit.

          (Oh, and to be clear, cuntry isn't a typo.)

    3. strangelybrown

      Re: WTF

      The most obvious recent example is Michelle Mone - her of 'fast track VIP lobbying for literally useless PPE via dodgy contacts oops all the money has vanished into myriad offshore holdings and trusts nevermind I'm in the Lords' fame. And breathe.

      Of course, the OG at this was Transport Minister Ernest Marples, who kicked off the motorway building boom and shut the branch lines via Beeching. Worth reading his lengthy Wiki on conflicts of interest, but the main point was he formerly managing director of Marples Ridgway and held 80% stake in them. Marples Ridgway, entirely coincidentally, were one of the biggest road engineering firms in the country.

      Plus ca change.

    4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: WTF

      "I just cannot believe that this has been approved and it shows the unbelievable level of incompetence in procurement."

      Why not? The level of incompetence has already been demonstrated many times so it's entirely believable.

      Meanwhile, does this include NICSP? Asking for a friend.

    5. anothercynic Silver badge

      Re: WTF

      Exactly! And yet... *sigh* The mind boggles.

  2. Andy The Hat Silver badge

    Complete madness

    "to integrate generative AI to give pension holders personalized and “engaging digital channels” to prepare for and manage their retirement."

    Why? Just why? All I need is a spreadsheet with some figures on it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Complete madness

      Me: "AI Please calculate when I can retire comfortably?"

      AI: "I'm afraid that isn't possible. You will be working until you die. My suggestion would be to cut out the remaining years of hard work and crushed dreams..."

  3. Pascal Monett Silver badge


    I think I'm just going to have to start investing in Capita stock. They fail and fail again, and yet they still keep on raking in the millions.

    Does Capita have dirt on the current administrative officials ? And their spouses ? And their children ?

    Just wondering . . .

    1. Spazturtle Silver badge

      Re: Un-be-liev-able

      Capita is a poor stock to own, it is at a lower price than it was in 1995 and they haven't been paying dividends in years. Somehow they keep losing money.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dear God, I'm knee deep in bullshit.

    "Enhancing the end-to-end customer experience will create more intuitive and innovative interactions"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Dear God, I'm knee deep in bullshit.

      They're Wanketeering

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Dear God, I'm knee deep in bullshit.

        Oh, it could be far, far worse than that. Currently pension providers don't really have that much information about you and your lifestyle - sure it's important information about your salary and investment with them, but that's all. But now imagine them integrating your "socials" with the AI their actuaries are spinning up - rah rah, you can now have "personalised" deals on annuities, lump sums, commutation etc. But like all asymmetric markets, the House wins over the players.

        You get the bullshit, they keep the money.

  5. Mike 137 Silver badge

    "Capita has scooped up a ten-year £239 million ($298 million) contract..."

    "The cost of cleaning the breach was estimated by Capita earlier in the summer to be near to £25 million ($31 million)."

    They're not quite covering their costs -- at one breach a year they'll finish up in the red by around £11 million.

    1. devin3782

      Re: "Capita has scooped up a ten-year £239 million ($298 million) contract..."

      Problem is when they do finally go pop, I wonder what happens to all that data they've been collecting? Who gets control of it? Thats the scary bit, too many eggs have been placed in crapitas basket

  6. captain veg Silver badge


    "Capita has scooped up a ten-year £239 million ($298 million) contract to oversee the Civil Service Pension Scheme (CSPS) on behalf of Britain's Cabinet Office, giving the under-fire tech services biz a needed boost."

    What's needed is death by fire.


  7. Yoshi

    " Capita initially said 4 percent of its servers were accessed but after part of an investigation downgraded this to 0.1 percent"

    My best guess, they went to <insert cloud provider here>, spun up a few thousand servers for an hour, recalculated the number and then shut them down. Wunderbar

  8. cookieMonster Silver badge

    My Christmas wish

    Is that a future generation of serial killers starts taking corrupt politicians, executives and influencers instead of children and women with <insert feature here>

    1. NeilPost Silver badge

      Re: My Christmas wish

      As real shame Dexter won’t be coming back (again).

  9. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

    Where is the corruption.

    This stuff is decided by the Sir Humphreys, not Ministers. But they are beyond criticism.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Where is the corruption.

      See the VIP contracts route during Covid, if you think civil service mandarins have much say in contract awards.

      Politicians, yes, civil servants no. The reality is that civil servants are beholden to public sector procurement rules and cannot bend those, so even when we know a shit outcome is inevitable, we (I'm one) can't do anything about it.

      Unfortunately, CSPS is actually (by pensions industry standards) very well run - but to please the arseholes of the current government it is being outsourcing to the useless bunglers of Crapita, so costs will go up, standards of service and security will go down. But it's being delivered by the private sector, so that's inherently a good thing, it seems.

      1. NeilPost Silver badge

        Re: Where is the corruption.

        The tire Sir Humphries Trope. Been watching GBNews again ?

  10. Headley_Grange Silver badge

    It's like all outsourcing - the CFO can prove with a spreadsheet that it's cheaper to outsource services than do it in-house. Then, when you book half a day's waiting time because your new keyboard has to be brought from Portsmouth because that's where IT support is, the CFO tells you that's not a valid use of waiting time and that you have to book it to the project. HR tell you that outsourcing is good because it makes it easier to "right-size" departments and reduces management costs but when you ask how many HR jobs are going now that we've outsourced IT, Facilities, Cleaning, etc. you get labelled as a troublemaker.

    As my old mate Dave used to say - "It's only funny if it's not true".

  11. 0laf

    Just as Capita announce 900 job cuts many in the UK. I'm sure they're provide wonderful service none-the-less.

    However they didn't earn the nickname "Crapita" for nothing.

  12. tel2016

    Who signed off on this?

    And how long before that person takes up a very lucrative role as a non-executive director at Capita?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Who signed off on this?

      Presumably one of the ministers for Cabinet Office, and about a year.

  13. johnB


    What possible purpose - other than making their bid for the work sound "sexy" - is there in using AI for pension payments, for deities sake?

    Pensions are about as simple as it gets: "Pay X the sum of £Y until he / she / it dies".

    It's worked for many years without AI.

    And it's Crapita. What possibly could go wrong?

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. captain veg Silver badge

      Re: AI????

      Well, experience to date would suggest that Capita is short on natural intelligence.


  14. Wytchway22

    Madness with a whiff of corruption

    Seriously!! I'm still checking Experian, regularly monitoring my bank account, concerned about any unusual activity thanks to Capita and now they're being rewarded for what?

    This needs to be looked into. Something is definitely not right.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Madness with a whiff of corruption

      You’re not concerned about Experian being hacked? I wouldn’t go near them with a shitty stick. Yes I know they’ll have tons of info on me, I can’t really help that unless I want to live in the woods and exist by bartering alone - but choose to use them? Not a cat in hells chance.

  15. Murphy's Lawyer

    Oh great

    Now i have to add going bankrupt because Crapita lost my pension details to everything else I'm worried about.

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