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MoJ emphasises speed, collaboration and choice of IT



Chief information officer outlines technology principles for the Ministry of Justice

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is aiming to give staff technology on a par with that they use at home, with an emphasis on speed and collaborative capabilities, according to its chief information officer.

Arif Harbott (pictured) has outlined the plans in a blogpost that says the ministry’s IT has become cumbersome compared with the fast connections and versatility that many of its staff have in their homes and from their own devices.

He says that MoJ has now developed nine principles to guide the development of its IT estate. They are summed up as:

  • A willingness to consider any solution.
  • Proportionate security that does not get in the way of work.
  • Up-to-date operating systems and browsers.
  • A diversity of laptops, tablets and smartphones.
  • Solutions based on user needs.
  • A preference for cloud computing over local storage.
  • The ability to store information from devices when they are discarded.
  • Continual renewal, rather than waiting for big replacement programmes.
  • Measuring progress in how much working hardware is delivered.

As a first step, the MoJ has been running a small pilot with the intention of building it up to handle more complex issues.

Latest tools

“We keep delivering working hardware at regular intervals, and are on track to radically improve our technology over the course of this year,” Harbott says. “Employees should finally have the latest tools to help them with their work.”

Richard Heaton, the ministry’s permanent secretary, recently highlighted efforts to raise its capability in using data to support its performance. This includes a readiness to make some of its data open, making use of predictive analytics and improving the data flows in the justice system.

Image from GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

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