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Welsh Government drafts digital service standards

07/12/20

Mark Say Managing Editor

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The Welsh Government is aiming to develop a set of standards for digital public services as part of a broader digital strategy for the country.

Welsh flag in sunlight

It has published details in the first of a series of blogposts by the digital and data team, calling for feedback – through comments on the blogs or an online form – in shaping a final document to be published some time next year.

Chief digital officer Glyn Jones said in the first blogpost that the common standards will act as a set of guidelines for making services simple, secure and convenient.

A first draft has already been published by the Centre for Digital Public Services, focusing on wellbeing, the use of the Welsh language, user need, ethics, security and technology. They are now in public beta and being tested on a number of services under development.

Jones pointed to a number of desired outcomes, including that services the can be online will be, people will choose to use them, they can be completed successfully first time, and have a consistent design and user experience and be available in English and Welsh. Also, they will be open to third parties to provide additional services.

“We must put the needs of service users at the heart of the way we deliver public services,” he said.

“Agreeing, adopting, promoting and sustaining a set of standards for digital public services is key, and will improve the experiences of people in Wales. Checking in regularly against an agreed set of standards can provide focus, pace and challenge.”

Five further missions

The digital and data team plans to follow up with blogs outlining the other five missions in the strategy, on the digital economy, skills, inclusion, connectivity and data and collaboration.

Commenting on the plans for the overall strategy, Deputy Minister for Economy Lee Waters said: “This strategy will be crucial in shaping how we effectively harness digital, data, technology and AI now and in the future for the benefit of people in Wales.

“We have a real opportunity here to use the power of digital to improve our public services and create a culture of innovation and collaboration. We have made some progress in this area, but there is certainly a lot more to be done.”

Image from iStock, Aleksii Lishkoni

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