NHS Technology Funding Compass

Where technology suppliers should focus sales efforts in 2023/2024

Table of contents

Amidst a backdrop of budgetary challenges in the NHS, we’ve analysed their latest NHS financial data to pinpoint concrete funding available for IT & software procurement. This report aims to streamline potential opportunities for technology suppliers, so you can direct your sales focus towards the most promising regions and organisations. 

We'll begin by outlining capital budgets across Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) to provide an indicator of which regions you should target. Then, we'll dive deep into three standout accounts, comparing technology budgets with current spending to pinpoint opportunities. Finally, we highlight three dominant IT expenditure themes for the year, outlining potential routes to market for suppliers.

ICS budgets for IT & Software procurement

England’s ICSs have published capital resource plans, revealing funding sources, budget allocations and upcoming procurement plans for 2023/2024.

Within these funding sources, each ICS reveals how much “operational capital” is allocated across the ICS for the financial year. NHS trusts use this budget to support ‘business as usual’ schemes essential for clinical delivery, including backlog maintenance, equipment and IT. 

What does this mean for you? Technology suppliers can expect procurement for replacement, renewal and upgrades of clinical IT and software to emerge from this funding source. To help you identify the regions with the largest IT & software budgets available, we have ranked ICSs by their operational capital allocations below.

The table above offers an overview of the "operational capital" allocated. While these funds are essential for NHS trusts, supporting a range of clinical delivery components, suppliers should note that they aren't exclusively used for technology procurement. Each ICS has the responsibility to balance its "operational capital" among various needs, including equipment upgrades and IT enhancements.

For technology suppliers, this table should be the first step in defining your target NHS accounts this year. The most proactive suppliers will not rely on this data alone; they'll leverage these early indicators to engage directly with decision-makers, seeking insights into how this budget will be allocated and the digital strategies planned for the year ahead.  

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Spotlight on key regions: Leveraging strategic documents for success

Some ICSs have gone above the minimum reporting requirements set forth by NHS England, and have used capital resource plans to provide clear visibility on their technology budgets for the upcoming year.

In this section of this report, we spotlight three of these regions, leveraging Stotles contract award data to demonstrate how technology suppliers can use these insights to identify concrete opportunities.

1. Hampshire & Isle of Wight ICS

Hampshire & Isle of Wight ICS has an operational capital allocation of £116m for 2032/2024, and a total capital budget of £353.3m across all funding sources.

Within their capital resource plan, they have revealed total planned spending by category, across all funding sources and organisations. With 12% of their total budget allocated to IT Systems, technology suppliers have a concrete £43m budget to engage over this year.

The capital resource plan breaks down precisely how this £43m budget will be allocated towards different trusts within their ICS, visualised in the table below. 

With £43m in IT funding allocated over these 7 buyers, we’ve used Stotles contract award data to identify what IT procurement has already happened so far this year and which opportunities remain for suppliers in 2023/2024. 

With over £30m of this budget up for grabs, suppliers who proactively pre-engage with these buyers will position themselves best for upcoming opportunities this fiscal year. 

To complete your research in the app and start engaging with key decision makers, get started with Stotles for free.

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2. North West London ICS

North West London (NWL) ICS has an operational capital allocation of £223.5m for 2032/2024. 

The ICB has made the strategic decision to support IT/Digital schemes as a key enabler to transform healthcare in the ICS. To support this objective, £43.9m (20%) of this budget has been allocated towards IT/Digital initiatives. It is hoped that their investments will improve efficiency, patient care, diagnosis and treatment across the region.

The NWL capital resource plan reveals further plans for this IT & Digital budget, including the following opportunities:

Of their overall technology budget, this leaves £23.3m available for other digital initiatives. 

To help you understand how much of this procurement has already occurred, and what opportunities potentially remain for suppliers, we’ve used Stotles contract award data to identify digital procurement that has already taken place in NWL ICS this year.

This analysis of reported contract award data suggests that procurement for the key IT business cases bullet pointed above has yet to take place. 

With over £40m of budget remaining, suppliers who proactively pre-engage with buyers will position themselves best for contracts this year. To complete your research in the app and start engaging with key decision makers, get started with Stotles for free.

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3. South Yorkshire ICS

South Yorkshire ICS has an overall capital budget of £165m for the 2023/2024 fiscal year across all funding sources.

Within South Yorkshire’s capital resource plan, the ICB has provided a detailed breakdown of how much budget has been allocated to key technology business cases, outlined below. 

Category Business Case Funding Allocation
IT Clinical Systems Electronic Patient Records £22m
IT Clinical Systems IMT Frontline Digitisation £3m
IT Clinical System Laboratory Information System £1.4m
IT Cyber Security IMT schemes £1.3m
IT Hardware Health Informatics Strategy £1.4m
IT Other IT essential upgrades £1.8m
Total - £30.9m

With £30.9m budgeted for technology projects in the year ahead, we’ve used Stotles contract award data to identify what technology procurement has already occurred, to help suppliers anticipate remaining opportunities in the ICS.

With less than £1m spent so far this year on IT contracts, the majority of IT business cases outlined in the ICSs procurement plan are yet to take place. To identify relevant decision maker contacts and proactively engage over the status of these planned business cases, get started with Stotles today.

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Spotlight on key business cases: Three national priorities in 2023/2024

By analysing procurement plans revealed in the ICS Budget Directory and Stotles contract award data, we have identified three major themes for technology spend in the NHS this year:

1. Upgrading GP IT

2. Implementing Electronic Patient Records (EPRs)

3. Advancing Cyber Resilience.

To help you identify the opportunities involved, this section of the report outlines key funding and opportunities associated with these major projects in the NHS.

1. GP IT Upgrades

By the end of the 2023/24 fiscal year, the NHS aims to have a comprehensive digital infrastructure in place for GP IT systems, ensuring that primary care practices and Primary Care Networks (PCNs) are equipped with the latest digital tools to enhance patient care and operational efficiency.

This presents monumental opportunities for tech suppliers who are able to provide:

GP IT software solutions: Modern software designed to overhaul legacy booking systems, including advanced tools like online consultation systems, messaging, and appointment booking tools.

Integration services: Solutions that promote interoperability between GPIT systems and other health platforms.

Digital transformation consultancy: Expertise in guiding primary care practices in their digital transformation journey, ensuring they leverage the full potential of their GPIT investments.

As per the Primary Care Service Development Funding roadmap, ICSs have been allocated funding which will be held centrally by the ICB for primary care & GP IT investment. Using the ICS Budget Directory, we have ranked ICS's by this funding source below.

With £136m allocated to GP IT initiatives, we’ve already seen a steady stream of contracts awarded for these clinical solutions this year, outlining some recent examples below.

With millions in opportunities still available through this funding, clinical software suppliers should ensure they are alerted to tenders as soon as they are released. To start tracking these opportunities, get started with Stotles for free. 

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2. Electronic Patient Records (EPRs)

The NHSs have set an ambitious goal of achieving complete digitisation of EPRs  by 2025, creating a pressing demand for robust EPR solutions and associated services. 

This creates opportunities for suppliers providing services for:

  • EPR software solutions: Provision of tailored EPR software that aligns with NHS standards, ensuring secure, efficient, and user-friendly interfaces.
  • Integration services: Offering solutions that ensure seamless interoperability between different health systems, especially crucial as the NHS interacts with various platforms and third-party systems.
  • Training and support: Comprehensive training programs for NHS staff to familiarise them with new EPR systems, along with ongoing technical support to address challenges and ensure smooth operations.
  • Data migration: Expertise in transitioning from legacy systems to new EPR platforms, ensuring data integrity, security, and minimal operational disruptions.

Using the ICS Budget Directory, we have identified major EPR projects with committed funding, ranked by total ICS investment below. These projects are often expensive and, due to their national priority status, leverage additional frontline digitisation funding outside of their operational capital allowance.

Integrated Care System Business Case Forecasted Investment
Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Implement a single shared EPR across the ICS Not specified
Hampshire & Isle Of Wight EPR implementation funding £50m
Black Country Not Specified £46m
Cheshire and Merseyside New EPR systems at Liverpool University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, Warrington & Halton Hospital Foundation Trust and Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust. £39m
Mid and South Essex EPR implementation(multiple sites) £36m
South Yorkshire Develop EPRs at Sheffield Teaching Hospital and Doncaster & Bassetlaw Hospital £20m
Humber and Yorkshire Enhancing the EPR(multiple sites) £18m
North East London EPR implementation at Barking, Havering And Redbridge: £17m
Lancashier and South Cumbria Blackpool Foundation Trust: New EPR system (£14.8m) £15m
Cornwall & Isles of Sicily Not Specified £14m
Suffolk and North East Essex East Suffolk and North Essex NHS FT: EPR replacement £11m
Nottingham and Nottinghamshire System wide EPR £10m
Coventry & Warwickshire EPR Digitisation at University Hospitals Coventry And Warwickshire: £7m
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent System wide EPR £7m
Northamptonshire EPR at Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust: £6m
Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes N/A £5m
Birmingham and Solihul Frontline Digitisation bids for Birmingham Women’s and Children’s NHS FT and Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS FT Not Specified
Devon Devon Partnership Trust: Digital Infrastructure – Full Business Case submitted to the Frontline Digitisation Team 31/05/2023 Not Specified
Lincolnshire EPR – OBC currently under review and update Not Specified
North Central London There is a minimum of three EPR business cases that NWL will seek final approval for in 2023/24 Not Specified
Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Continued roll out of a new EPR system at Shrewsbury and Telford Trust and Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Trust. Not Specified
Somerset Somerset FT: EHR system (developing business case) Not Specified
South East London Developing EHR systems and the capability for records to be shared across care providers. Not Specified
West Yorkshire Business cases have been submitted for EPR at Airedale NHS FT Not Specified
Total - £301m

We have pulled the data in this table by combining “ongoing schemes” and “upcoming business cases” published by ICBs in their 2023/2024 capital resource plans.

Offering EPR solutions or related services? Ensure you're in the loop with the latest contracts that can elevate the NHS's digitisation journey. Stay ahead of the game and identify upcoming opportunities for your business.

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3. Cyber Security / Resilience

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) have assigned ICSs the responsibility to develop cyber strategies for their regions, with the goal of achieving cyber resilience by 2025. The goal is to ensure that patient data, as well as critical health infrastructure, remain safeguarded against potential threats.

This presents opportunities for suppliers able to provide NHS buyers with:

  • Cybersecurity software: Provision of advanced security software that aligns with NHS standards, ensuring robust protection against malware, ransomware, and other cyber threats.
  • Network security: Offering solutions that ensure the integrity and security of the NHS's vast network, preventing unauthorised access and potential breaches.
  • Training and awareness: Comprehensive programs aimed at educating NHS staff about the importance of cybersecurity, best practices, and how to recognise potential threats.
  • Incident response and management: Expertise in swiftly addressing and managing any security breaches or incidents, minimising damage and ensuring continuity of critical health services.

Cyber suppliers can expect ICSs to leverage operational capital and frontline digitisation funding to support cyber security initiatives this year, and should use the table rankings to inform your selection of target accounts.

To demonstrate how you can identify specific opportunities within targeted regions, we’ve used Stotles data to identify early signals in expiring contracts you can use to prompt your outreach messaging.  

Buyer Contract Outreach engagement recommendation
Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Cyber Security Development & Security Operations Centre Development Roadmap Post-roadmap completion, engage with the buyer to identify the Trust's next cybersecurity steps and potential opportunities.
University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust
Cyber Security Incident Response Retainer and Cyber Security Posture Assessment After the assessment service, connect with the buyer to understand the effectiveness of their strategy and explore future cybersecurity plans and potential collaborations.
East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust
Procurement of a Cyber Assurance Dashboard for cyber security monitoring purposes. Reach out to the buyer to discuss the dashboard's performance metrics and explore the Trust's upcoming cybersecurity initiatives and potential partnership avenues.

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust
WHHT - Secure Communication Solutions for Healthcare Teams Discuss the platform's integration and user feedback, and probe into the Trust's future plans for enhancing secure communication solutions and potential expansion opportunities.
Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
Trend Micro Cloud One-Workload Security 28/09/22 - 27/09/23
Discuss the outcomes and performance of the security solution and inquire about the Trust's upcoming cybersecurity needs and potential contract renewals or expansions.

To take the next steps on cyber security opportunities in the NHS and unlock decision maker contacts in your target accounts, get started with Stotles for free.

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Next steps to win NHS opportunities

With the insights you've garnered from this report, you're poised to navigate the intricacies of the NHS technology funding ecosystem. The following steps are not just recommendations - they are essential actions that will position your business at the forefront of this dynamic market.

1) Be specific about the opportunities you want to pursue

Focus on projects that align with your core competencies. With national programme funding backing diverse projects like GP IT and EPR Implementation, ensure you're targeting emerging opportunities that resonate with your expertise.

2) Focus on target regions

Different regions have varying priorities and budgets. Dive deep into the budget allocations for each ICS to pinpoint where your solutions might be most needed and valued, and laser your focus onto these target accounts.

3)Forge strategic partnerships

Collaborate with suppliers or entities already engaged with your target accounts. Their established relationships can provide insights into upcoming opportunities and open doors for potential collaborations.

4) Proactively engage decision-makers

Don't wait for tenders to open to the public. Build relationships with NHS stakeholders in advance. Understand their challenges and position your solutions as the answer, ensuring you are top-of-mind when opportunities arise.

For a more detailed guide on navigating the NHS contract landscape, especially in the context of ICS budgets, delve into our 'ICS Budget Playbook: How to identify and win NHS contracts'.


The NHS's forward-thinking investments for 2023/2024 highlight its dedication to driving technological advancements and elevating patient experiences. A key goal underpinning these investments is unlocking digital maturity, ensuring that the NHS remains at the cutting edge of healthcare innovation.

With substantial budgets allocated in ICSs across the country, suppliers are presented with a golden opportunity to align their offerings with the NHS's key objective. From improving cybersecurity infrastructures to enhancing clinical communication platforms, the scope of these projects is vast and varied. As suppliers navigate this landscape, it's crucial to stay informed, proactive, and strategic.

By leveraging insights from resources like the ICS Budget Directory and understanding the nuances of each funding programme, suppliers can position themselves at the forefront of the NHS's transformative journey. To take the next step and identify upcoming opportunities, engage with decision makers and fast track your NHS sales, get started with Stotles today.

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