We announced in March that we would reform the governance of our technology provision in central government. We need a simpler, clearer model of governance based on user needs. Those users are our colleagues as well as citizens and this issue strikes right at the heart of the civil service reform programme as well as our digital agenda.
So what are we doing?
So far we have:
- completed an initial analysis to identify how the current system is put together, and how it’s working
- closed 2 existing boards and put the rest on “pause”
- created one board that we are publicly committed to – Open Standards
- communicated the main changes, and
- monitored the effects of doing these things.
We have also started to identify user needs, to work with and consult digital leaders, department technology leads, procurement leads, finance directors, delivery staff and service managers. We will create user groups to ensure all stakeholder needs are taken into account and that we don’t lose the knowledge and expertise from previous boards.
The new approach to governance will be transparent and include effective peer review with open and honest feedback from all users. It will be based on clear principles. It will itself be supported by digital technology. It will identify the areas where we can co-deliver more services – create common service provision across government or parts of government – in a more effective way.
How it will help
This will help us make our common infrastructure more efficient and effective. It will help departments get the most out of their existing contracts and to negotiate the end of those contracts that aren’t working for users. It will help us implement less costly solutions for citizens that are based on open standards, that use data effectively and deploy modern technology at a fraction of today’s cost.
It will also help us in building technical capability across government and providing succession planning so that our best graduates and internal talent can use relevant tools to help shape their careers in technology.
By July we will be in a position to propose a new governance model for the delivery of technology: one that works for the digital government services we are creating. As we develop this model over the coming weeks, I will report on the progress we are making on this blog.