The companies that carry out PIP assessments on behalf of the government have been told they must improve as their tender period comes to an end.
Atos and Capita could have their contacts extended by two years to ‘ensure stability’ but MP Frank Field has said that they must ‘deliver, or else’.
The two firms were criticised last year after their tests were judged to be unacceptable by the government’s quality control scheme.
Data showed that the private firms failed to meet their quality standards target after over 6% of assessments were deemed “unacceptable” between July and October 2017.
Now the government is moving some of the work in-house, which Mr Field said was a warning to the firms.
“The government is making the important first steps to enable it to get out of a hole of its own making,” he said, as reported by the BBC.
“Having the capacity to bring assessments back in-house will put it in a far stronger position to turn the screws on its hitherto failing contractors, in the interests of claimants and all taxpayers.
“This should serve as notice for Atos and Capita to start delivering, or else.”
The re-tendering process could see other companies battling to take over Atos and Capita’s contracts, which would see the pair lose out on hundreds of millions of pounds.
Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey stated that the government will pilot making video recordings of assessments a standard part of the process.