Home Office Payment Processing

Supporting government targets through savings and efficiencies

Home Office Payment Processing

The Home Office Payment Processing Service (HOPPS) manages some 705,693 visa applications per annum1 from people seeking to enter or stay in the country each year, with associated payments worth more than £595m per annum1.

Immigration applications receive intense scrutiny from MPs, the press, and the public, and the service requires high standards of efficiency and delivery to retain confidence.

In January 2017 additional services were added for British passport validation and checking for forgeries. We adopted the Home Office approved passport validation techniques and processes. From January 2017 to September 2018 we have validated 77,234 passports.

11 September 2017 – 31 August 2018

"We have experienced a strong collaborative relationship with NS&I GPS. Throughout the contract we have had a delivery partner that continually seeks to maintain service excellence, while also looking to innovate and improve"

Nicola McAuleyAssistant Commercial Manager, UK Visas and Immigration, Home Office

The challenge

  • Reduce processing complexity
  • Increase processing capacity
  • Validate British Passports
  • Improve operational capabilities


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The results

The Home Office has achieved its key objectives:

Passport validation

The passport validation process is very thorough and each British passport is checked using a 9-step process involving specialised equipment supplied by the Home Office. Through this process we’ve identified 1% of passports as potentially fraudulent.

Improved customer experience

By introducing the passport validation process we have improved the customer experience, as the passports can be returned to the applicant quickly. This has also led to lower costs as less resources are required by the Home Office to deal with the return of documents.

Savings and results

Operational costs have reduced by 10% over the contract period. Current service level agreements have been met and exceeded, reflecting efficient delivery.

Speed of deployment

Enabling the Home Office to transition to a new contract early meant real-time cost savings and a simpler contractual arrangement with a central government agency.

Support government targets

Working towards the government’s targets of encouraging interdepartmental efficiencies, and re-use of public assets.

Detailed management information

Forecasts are more accurate, saving unplanned costs for extra temporary staff, while maintaining excellent service to clients.

Responsive and collaborative

Developing strong working relationships to enable better quality solutions to be formulated for operational issues and capabilities.

Specialist advice

A strategic partner in banking and payments procedures, NS&I GPS are able to provide future advice about technology change in payments processing.

Supporting government targets through savings and efficiencies

NS&I GPS staff becoming involved in the entire first-line operation. The team opens application packages, checks documents, captures data, validates passports, enters records on the HOPPS system, processes payments, and repackages the applications to the right workstream handlers for Home Office assessment.

Working collaboratively with the Home Office to ensure accurate forecasting of applications for each workstream, which would determine the operational resource retirements.

NS&I GPS providing extensive management information via an online portal, based on the number of processed applications that the team is handling. This helps make forecasts more accurate, avoiding any additional costs and delays. This also took into account seasonal peaks to ensure service was delivered at optimum levels while delivering value for money for the Home Office.

Since go live, NS&I GPS have also managed a highly successful and rapid technology refresh and digitalisation to ensure maximum efficiency.

Efficiency and staff productivity targets are being met or exceeded.

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