The Government's Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has announced it has signed a £400-million, seven-year deal to outsource its print functions.

The DWP said today the contract to provide print and associated services has gone to iON, a group led by document management vendor Xerox.

It will provide a single service management infrastructure for all the DWP's core print and related requirements and will facilitate a transformational programme to manage the department's document services and improve the quality and effectiveness of its document related communication with the public.

Today’s announcement also claimed the contract will result in substantial overall savings for the department in line with its commitment to the UK Government's Efficiency Review targets.

"Through iON, Xerox and its partners will provide us with a streamlined and coherent solution to DWP's current and future needs for print, publicity material and associated services. This will give us improved value for money, greater efficiency and a vehicle for continuous improvement in this important area of our business," said DWP’s commercial director, David Smith.

In addition to Xerox as the prime contractor, the iON group includes EDS, Accenture, CEVA Logistics (formerly TNT Logistics), Remploy, The Stationery Office and TNT. It will provide the DWP with the skills and expertise to deliver a major transformation of some key business processes related to document management and production, the group said.

The contract is expected to be finalised and underway by 1 June, with an option to extend it for a further three years. And the transition and transformation of services will be phased over the next two years.