Socitm has released a ground-breaking report detailing its predictions for public sector global technology trends throughout the next 12 months
Written by Socitm Associate Director, Jos Creese, the report is underpinned by an international survey, undertaken in collaboration with our international partner associations: ALGIM (New Zealand), Local (LOLA) and Major Cities of Europe (MCE).
Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and Cloud Computing are key areas where participating countries identified huge growth. These are evaluated alongside cyber protection, citizen-centred design and affordable and flexible implementations. Public trust in digital government is also a hot topic for consideration.
According to Creese, who has more than 30 years IT leadership experience, the implications of the report are more important than ever as the coronavirus pandemic makes exponential changes to the way local government works.
“In the current climate all bets are off about what technology trends matter most in the public sector – those that are at the forefront now are supporting mobile and flexible working,” he explains.
“All public services are under huge pressure from COVID-19, and some are wishing services had not been so badly cut over the last decade. More importantly, those that are coping best with the need for their workers to function remotely are those that have invested wisely in collaborative technology over recent years and encouraged flexibility in working practices.”
While some public bodies have taken this in their stride, with strong policies, governance, capability and technologies already in place, others have been overwhelmed. The key issues for those struggling to meet the new technology demands include :
- Mitigating data risks has not yet been achieved, which means data sharing and data handling is problematic.
- Technology is mixed and often dated. People are asking what to use, how to use it and how to do it? For example, people remain confused as to whether tele or video conferencing best suits the needs of a remote workforce.
- Responsibilities and ownership are lacking, so there is a fear about how to approach the new models of working.
- Policies and processes are incomplete and poorly understood.
- Infrastructure needs upgrading (especially Wi-fi infrastructure).
- Upgrading and updating cyber and anti-virus protection.
As Creese explains, this report will help the public sector evaluate the myriad factors affecting service delivery in these challenging times. The comprehensive information it contains will help ICT leaders take an holistic view of the new and ever-evolving challenges we face.
He explains: “This is not just about the obvious video and teleconferencing tools, cloud office platforms and collaboration software. It is also about the maturity of digital culture, policies, processes, governance and risk management that supports these new ways of working.
“There are clear lessons about the need for public services to be digitally mature. The international work led by the UK looking at technology trends for global public services is critical for the future, and we can learn from the current crisis: We should all be concerned about new cyber risks resulting from a ‘cobbled together’ digital solution in a crisis.”
Read and share the report: https://socitm.net/download/public-sector-global-technology-trends-2020/
More about the author: https://www.linkedin.com/in/joscreese/
About Socitm: Socitm is the society for innovation, technology and modernisation. It is the network for professionals who are shaping and delivering public services. Established for over 30 years, Socitm continues to challenge convention, inspire change and power progress.