Ailsa Beaton

The Metropolitan Police’s former director of information Ailsa Beaton was paid almost £400,000 last year, according to College of Policing figures.

The data shows that Beaton earned £193,756 in salary, was awarded £167,230 compensation for loss of office, received £33,388 in pension contributions and a further £3,140 for benefits in kind, adding up to a total of £397,514.

Beaton announced that she was planning to leave the Met at the end of 2012, and left her post in March 2013 at the end of the financial year.

The figures were released by the College of Policing in its pay and rewards register, which lists the pay of all chief officers in the 43 forces in England and Wales.

A report by a London Assembly committee published in August 2013 concluded that the force’s technology is 'out-of-date, ineffective and overly expensive'. An analysis of this report by CIO UK writers revealed excessive levels of oversight by interest groups that monitor the Metropolitan Police.

The report said that years without a coherent strategy or strong leadership had left the force spending money on maintaining old systems rather than investing in new technology, with 85 percent of its annual £250 million ICT budget solely dedicated to maintaining legacy systems.

A spokesperson said: “the £167,230 compensation for loss of office is in line with standard civil service terms for voluntary exit payments. It has been offered to employees previously and continues to be offered to other staff as part of wider efforts to reduce the size of the workforce.”

She added: “The £3,140 for benefits in kind is linked to private healthcare provision and was also a standard benefit made available to all senior Metropolitan Police staff at that time. It has since been withdrawn.”

Beaton has since been appointed as a non-executive member of the Information Commissioner Office's Management Board.

Richard Thwaite is currently interim CIO at the Met. He recently unveiled a ‘Total Technology’ strategy for the force, including plans to invest £200 million in technology over three years, with an emphasis on mobility and information sharing.