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UK technology trains of thought...

Sunday, November 13, 2005

UK Cabinet IT Strategy

The week before last the Cabinet Office published the government's new IT strategy.

This strategy is important, as it refocuses 10% of the current IT spend by the entire of the public sector. This will mean the current systems will have projects shelved and the cash (£1.4bn) will be reinvested in implementing this strategy. I expect the programmes discussed in the strategy will also have their budges augmented by things like the ID cards project.

Key changes

  • Increased focus on planning, governance and increasing reliability of delivery.
  • Particular mention of strengthened scrutiny throughout projects.
  • Development of new IT delivery processes, utilising the best practice (particularly in governance) from the private sector. Including continuous improvement.
  • Increased focus on a complex array of stakeholders, including front line staff (DRs, nurses, teachers, citizens, taxpayers, business). Particularly on usability, with champions for each stakeholder type.
  • Focus on transactional projects, e.g. pay my council tax, book my hospital appointment.
  • Modern channels for access to services.
  • Key focus on efficiency (Gershon), benefit justification of projects
  • Focus on swift adoption of new technology
  • Prominent attention to 'Information Assurance', i.e. security
  • Back office shared services. Bringing HR/Finance systems across the country into line. An early (2005/2006) objective is putting a governance model in place and developing new IT delivery processes
This is all very good, and the BCS, SOCITM and Audit Office are firmly behind it. It will be interesting to see how the first few projects manifest themselves.

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