• Anon

Parliamentary Question to Minister of Health

Question: To ask the Minister for Health the cost of the ongoing rollout of the SAP payroll system throughout the HSE; the number of HSE employees directly involved in the project; the number of consultants involved and the cost of same; the travel and accommodation costs associated with the national integrated staff records and pay programme; if there was a procurement process, and if so, if he will provide the details and outcome of the process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. - John McGuinness



Dear Deputy Mc Guinness,

I refer to the above Parliamentary Question which has been referred by the Minister for Health to the Health Service Executive for direct response.

I wish to advise as follows:

To ask the Minister for Health the cost of the ongoing rollout of the SAP payroll system throughout the HSE;


1. the number of HSE employees directly involved in the project;


There are 44 HSE employees directly funded by the NiSRP Programme at present. This figure includes:

  • 7 local (to the HSE South East region) team members who support the current implementation of NiSRP in that region

  • 7 NiSRP Self Service Helpdesk operators, increase of 5 on normal number, engaged for 6 months post go live in HSE South East, specifically to respond / answer queries from the 26,000 employees now active on the NiSRP system/processes [increase of 12,000 employees]


2. the number of consultants involved and the cost of same;

There are currently three Consultants providing delivery consulting capability / advisory support to the Programme.

The pattern of professional services [consultancy and/or external services provider] utilisation changes over time depending on the evolving needs of the Programme, and therefore associated costs are variable. The most up to date consultancy costs, based on the average expenditure of the three most recent months, is approximately €92k per month.

In Q1 2020, the Programme experienced capacity issues within its senior management, which left a number of Workstream Lead (project management) positions vacant. These positions were filled at short notice by external service provider resources on a temporary basis; however, the advent of the Covid19 pandemic and its impact on the HSE meant recruitment could not be progressed on standard timelines. The Programme is utilising 3.2 WTE to supplement capacity gaps and enable delivery to continue (and ROI to be sustained), with costs of approximately €117k per month on average. Recruitment of HSE staff for these positions is now underway and this cost is expected to reduce to €0 - €30k per month by January 2021.

As set out in its approved Business Case, the role of consultants is to provide “specialist capability … [when] knowledge or expertise does not exist or is not available in the timescales required.”, with the intention of reducing the use of third parties over the course of the Programme’s lifecycle. A key role (being delivered) is the transfer of skills / knowledge from third party providers to HSE staff, thereby reducing long term reliance - noting this is dependent on HSE resources being available to receive such ‘upskilling’.

3. the travel and accommodation costs associated with the national integrated staff records and pay programme;

Please find below a monthly breakdown of travel and subsistence costs for the NISRP Programme over the 18 months to August 2020:




4. if there was a procurement process, and if so, if he will provide the details and outcome of the process; and if he will make a statement on the matter

On the basis that this question relates to consultancy procurement:

A competitive tender process was undertaken in Q3 2017, seeking professional services inputs/supports in the following areas:


  • Strategic Planning and preparation of Project Initiation Documentation

  • Change Management

  • Assistance in the preparation, review and revision of papers for the Governance Framework

  • Quality Assurance and review of progress against plans

  • Resources to augment capacity for skills/experience not available within the Health system to the Programme

The contract was awarded to PA Consulting Service Ltd who commenced contract delivery in late 2017.

If you require any further information or clarification, please contact me.

Yours sincerely,

Miriam Keegan

NiSRP Programme Director | Assistant National Director | Health Business Services | HSE

John McGuinness T.D.

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