Enterprise Shared Services

Enterprise Shared Services (ESS) brings together responsibility for Human Resource (HR), Information Technology (IT), Finance and Digital Services along with the management of Properties into a single directorate within the Department of Finance (DOF).

Overview of ESS

The primary function of ESS is to deliver efficient and effective customer focused services primarily to the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS). Its mission statement is "to make a positive difference to the delivery of public services through being customer-focused, high performing and innovative."

The ESS 2020 Strategy reflects work undertaken by the ESS senior management team and senior officials in DOF to develop the high level strategic direction for the future of ESS.

ESS annual updates provide information on ESS achievements throughout the financial year. 

Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and Memorandum of Understanding are offered within ESS Service Areas.

Finance Shared Services

Finance Shared Services are provided by Account NI.

Account NI is the financial processing centre for Northern Ireland Civil Service Departments and provides one streamlined service from purchasing through to payment of invoice. Staff in NICS departments have access to easy ordering through a web-based purchasing system that generates and issues purchase orders.

Account NI Service Level Agreement 2015-2016

HR Shared Services

HR Shared Services are provided by HRConnect.


HRConnect is the transactional Human Resource service for the NICS Departments, the NIO and other participating organisations. HRConnect comprises seven HR services:

  • external NICS recruitment
  • internal vacancy management
  • employee relations
  • non-industrial payroll
  • industrial payroll
  • learning and development
  • performance management

HRConnect enables staff to access HR-related information quickly and easily from their desktops and to perform many functions on a self-service basis. HRConnect provides administrative support and HR advice from the Shared Service Centre (SSC) at the Metro Building in Belfast.

Digital Shared Services

Digital Shared Services (DSS) has three main business areas:

Public Sector Shared Services

The Public Sector Shared Services website is the latest development by the Public Sector Shared Services Programme (PSSSP); a collaboration between the health, education and central government sectors (including all Non-Departmental Public Bodies) in Northern Ireland that is overseen by a cross sectoral programme board led by the Head of the Civil Service.

The website is collectively owned by these participating sectors and managed by the cross sectoral PSSSP team, and can be viewed using the below link.

Properties Division

Properties Division is responsible for the provision of government office accommodation and services throughout Northern Ireland, including new and refurbished accommodation, building maintenance and management and the Stormont Estate grounds.

It also has responsibility for promoting energy efficiency in the public sector, through both the Public Sector Energy Campaign (PSEC) and the implementation of policies stemming from EU Directives, as well as advancing sustainability.

It also has responsibility for Building Regulations legislation in Northern Ireland and manages the NICS Art Collection.

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