The Government Digital Service (GDS) held their latest event for digital exemplar organisations on Wednesday 29 January.
After a keynote speech from Francis Maude, a succession of ministers and CEOs took the brave step of standing up in front of a live audience and showcasing their latest 'live' applications. With one minor exception these all proved to be very simple and very successful and provided all of the other exemplar services there with an insight into what 'Digital by default' is shaping up to look like.
This event had gathered all of the government digital exemplar organisations together, including of course those from BIS partner organisations and so we thought that it would be an excellent opportunity to catch up with them, as well as other BIS partner organisations that have been successfully digitising their transactional services and output. The exemplars, the Insolvency Service, Intellectual Property Office, Land Registry, National Apprenticeships Service and the Student Loan Company were joined by Companies House and the Met Office to discuss their progress and share their successes and challenges with each other.
Following on from a similar event we had facilitated in the summer and a customer insight and user research seminar we facilitated in October, this meeting proved to be an excellent opportunity to discuss shared issues and compare stories of success and frustration. It was also an opportunity to talk to the partner organisations about how the digital transformation team could help them and what future events and help for partner organisations we could develop to ensure that they could comply with the governments digital by default agenda as efficiently and painlessly as possible.
The main areas that the partner organisations were seeking clarity around were:
- the link between ICT and Digital spending submissions
- how to produce a robust but flexible business case
- how to build digital capability
- how to make your organisation more agile
The group discussed their different experiences of tackling these issues and of working closely with GDS. This peer to peer approach of sharing successes and challenges proved to be highly effective with a number of useful links being established and experiences shared. We also discussed how the digital transformation team could better help the partner organisations. Events suggested were:
- A work shop to examine the new self assessment rules that will affect all new and refreshed transactional services of under 100K. These new regulations begin at the start of April and the group thought that a meeting, with GDS involvement, that examined the new system in detail would be very helpful. It was agreed that we would convene this meeting in March.
- An agile showcase, using the experience of the Met Office as a template, to look at the way an organisation can implement fundamental change.
The partner organisations all agreed that regular get-togethers were very useful and that the link with GDS and the help and advice that our team could provide will prove to be very useful in the future.