Public Service ICT Strategy

2. Digital First

Digital Government is not simply about putting front-end services online but rather it encompasses everything from the core digitisation of public services to the digital infrastructure, governance and processes, including both front-end and back-office transformation needed to deliver services for citizens, businesses and Government.

Government should use the appropriate mix of electronic channels of communication and engagement to improve citizen satisfaction in service delivery, reach new levels of engagement and trust, and increase efficiency within the Public Service. This Strategic Objective will build on previous successes by the continued digitisation of the top citizen interactions and the increased use of ICT to deliver improved efficiency within the Public Service and provide new digital services to citizens, businesses and public servants. This will also include initiatives to garner feedback from the public on their expectations and the design of digital services from Government.

This objective is underpinned by several key focus areas including:

Digitisation of Top Citizen and Business Interactions

Prioritise the transformation, modernisation and digitisation of the main existing citizen and business transactional service across Public Services. Significant progress has been made in digitisation of information and transactional services and further digitisation will be planned on the basis of a rolling programme with new projects being added as existing ones are completed. Prioritisation will be agreed and progress monitored centrally on an ongoing basis.

Strategic Digital Projects

A small number of key strategic Digital projects will be identified and prioritised within each Public Body. These should include both eGovernment and backoffice improvement initiatives and will require full buy-in from the relevant management board. Projects should deliver demonstrable efficiency and good value within individual Public Bodies or on an interdepartmental basis. Priority should be given to projects that leverage innovative, cloud or mobile technologies to deliver new services and drive efficiencies.

Design for Digital

All new services being delivered by Public Bodies should be designed for “Digital First” meaning they are compelling and intuitive to use and those who can use digital services will voluntarily choose to do so. This will require a shift in the culture of Public Bodies so that they think digital first and design digital services around the needs of the end-user. The introduction of new channels, digital services or digital work practices will present challenges requiring an increase in digital skills across the wider Public Service.

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© 2015 Department of Public Expenditure and Reform