Another overhaul of a payroll system by a government agency has hit trouble with the launch date of a new system for police pushed out.

Police will not say how much more money could be needed for the new payroll and HR system, but have now confirmed that the planned April launch will be missed.

The project was flagged in a briefing to incoming Police Minister Judith Collins. While much is redacted, it outlined that a remediation plan was now in place.

In response to questions from the Herald, Superintendent Mike Johnson, executive support officer to the Human Resources Management Information System project, said overhauling payroll for more than 12,000 employees was complex.

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"It is normal that during any significant project of this scale and complexity, issues will arise that affect the project timeline."

The new launch date would be "later in 2016". A priority was to make sure the payroll and rostering system was robust and could meet future demands, Mr Johnson said.

"It was decided that a prudent step would be to extend the project timeline to make sure we get it right for all our staff."

Asked if the total budget was now expected to increase, and by how much, Mr Johnson said police continued to monitor costs but could not comment further at this stage.

"Any changes to the project costs will be met from within existing Police baseline."

The Treasury is monitoring the HRMIS as part of its work overseeing the Government's 38 riskiest projects, which together total $20.5 billion.

In December, it released a report that rated the project as "amber/red", meaning delivery against budget and schedule was in doubt.

Mike Johnson, executive support officer to the Human Resources Management Information System project. Photo / Warren Buckland
Mike Johnson, executive support officer to the Human Resources Management Information System project. Photo / Warren Buckland

"Costs have risen by $10 million [29 per cent] and the project is unlikely to be delivered within its total appropriated costs of $56.2 million," the report noted.

Labour's police spokesman Stuart Nash said embarking on the payroll overhaul was questionable at a time when frontline resourcing was under pressure.

A spokeswoman for Ms Collins said the project was complex and had clearly experienced some issues.

However, if more money was needed those costs would be met from within Police baselines.

The police payroll system is the latest Government IT project to experience problems. The Education Ministry's new Novopay payroll system led to widespread pay errors for school staff. Eventually taken over by the Government, it cost an extra $45 million.

Technical changes to implement child support reforms cost tens of millions of dollars more than originally estimated, and efforts to merge the computer systems of Customs and the Ministry for Primary Industries is almost $30 million over the initial budget.