Public Sector

Public Sector

The Public Sector is slow but does it have to be? 

Digital Transformation.

System Modernisation.

Change Management. 

These loosely similar terms mean largely the same thing: digitising and organisation and the culture within it. 

This is hugely relevant for every sector in every country, but none more perhaps than the United Kingdom’s Local and Central Governments, which are governed by laboriously slow and out of date systems in charge of such important facets of British life as driving, receiving benefits and healthcare.

13 July 2020  \\ Public Sector                             Author: Alexander Boast

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The Covid-19 pandemic sweeping the world and its resultant economic recession have shown us two things: we weren’t ready and we need to change. We are hearing concurrently that we aren’t ready: track and trace will not be finished until September earliest, but also that we’re past the peak – is it coming too late? 

It is endemic of our attitude towards the collection, protection and value of data that not only has the UK government failed to create their “world-beating” track and trace app, falling far behind other countries, we haven’t actually got data on how many people have recovered from the virus either. 

More agile, digitally-savvy governments have had no issues creating sophisticated data collection systems to enable track and trace (admittedly with some help from tech giants such as Apple and Google), but the UK lags behind because of the layers and layers of inefficient, out-dated bureaucracy. 

There are so many examples of areas in which the government can and should have digitalised already, but hasn’t for whatever reason.

We could write additional blogs on each example, but let’s take, for instance, teaching.

Virtual learning, E-learning and online conferencing is nothing new, and in fact has been around since webcams were created, and whilst some UK universities have pivoted to fully-online educations, many schools around the country are currently being told they need to get back in the classroom: something nobody is entirely certain is safe. 

Secondly, we know that the Office of National Statistics collects, collates and publishes data that is often at odds with those published by number 10 – which set of data should we believe? Both, is clearly the answer, if we have the relevant context.

Often we don’t because of a failure to modernise and digitalise. This is not to say we don’t think the government has done a good job, clearly they have supported many people in society, but surely now is the time to get serious about moving into the future and if now isn’t the time, when is?

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