The UK's local e-government programme could lead to significant direct cost savings in addition to improved services for citizens, according to two separate studies out this week.
Research by the local e-government National Projects has found that six of the projects alone could lead to direct cost savings across England of £300m and increased revenue of £56m.
The 22 National Projects are backed by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and are aimed at creating standard products, systems and best practice that can be adopted by councils across the country.
Phil Hope MP, minister for local e-government, said the report shows that the National Projects are helping councils to meet the efficiency targets set out in the Gershon Review.
Local government user body the Society of IT managers (Socitm) also claims councils are on target to put services online by the end of 2005.
Socitm's annual report shows IT spending across the UK's local authorities up by 10 percent to £2.7bn and claims public sector IT managers are increasingly having a major say in shaping the wider future service development of local authorities as a result of the 2005 target.
The government recently admitted it would narrowly miss the target of all authorities putting services only by 2005 but still declared that a success.