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CDDO publishes roadmap for digital and data in government

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The Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) has set out six missions and a trio of ambitions for the use of digital technology and data in central government and other parts of the public sector.

It has published a roadmap document, Transforming for a Digital Future, written in collaboration with government departments and outlining where it wants the sector to be by 2025.

“Digital and data are absolutely key to unlocking so many of the Government’s priorities, where we’re looking to work more efficiently, we’re working on net zero, levelling up, the cost of living and economic growth” said Alex Chisholm, chief operation officer for the Civil Service in an accompanying video.

“In all of those areas the use of data is vital and the ability to deliver digital services to end users is absolutely fundamental.”

The document presents three broad visions for 2025: to exceed public expectations with policies and public services fit for the digital age; to equip civil servants with the necessary skills and capabilities; and to enhance government efficiency and security.

Senior sponsors

Each of the six missions is sponsored by a senior government official.

The first, with Peter Scofield, permanent secretary at the Department for Work and Pension as lead, is to transform public services to achieve the right outcomes by raising them to a level of ‘great’ against a framework created using industry benchmarks. This incorporates metrics on digital adoption, digital completion, user satisfaction, meeting Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1, and the cost per transaction.

Second is the further development of the GOV.UK One Login service, sponsored by Jim Harra, permanent secretary at HM Revenue and Customs. This is aimed at replacing more than 190 different ways to set up accounts to access government services.

Third involves the provision of better data to power decision making. It is sponsored by Professor Sir Ian Diamon, national statistician and chief executive of the UK Statistics Authority, and involves exploring areas such as sharing data and the use of AI.

Paul Lincoln, second permanent secretary at the Ministry of Defence, is the sponsor of the fourth mission for modernising, securing and enhancing the sustainability of government’s technology. It covers the replacement of legacy systems, and standardising and simplifying the way technology is built and procured.

Elements of this include following the updated Government Cloud First policy and working with a ‘secure by design’ approach.

Skills at scale

Fifth is building digital skills at scale, sponsored by Matthew Rycroft, permanent secretary at the Home Office. This includes measures such as recruiting around 2,500 tech and digital specialists through apprenticeships and talent programme, and the pilot of a new digital secondments programme.

Finally, Conrad Smewing, director general public spending at HM Treasury, is leading the mission to unlock digital transformation.

This includes embedding agile and product-centric ways of working across government, ensuring legislation is fit for digital delivery and teams have the flexibility to quickly adopt new solutions. It also involves shifting established ideas about risk, value and the way digital projects are funded and delivered. 

Jim Harra commented: “Citizens are increasingly digitally aware and digitally enabled, and they expect to deal with government digitally. And when they do so they want that service to be consistent, they want it to be seamless, and they want it to be of the same standard as the other services they use.”

He added: “One of the things the strategy stresses is the need for us to work together and to use the best that we have. By 2025 I hope that citizens will say that they’re experiencing seamless services.”

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