Government digital transformation agenda picking up momentum, survey suggests

The government’s digital transformation agenda is picking up momentum, but still faces a number of barriers, according to the second annual Government Digital Trends Survey.

1,235 civil servants responded to the survey, compiled by Sopra Steria, with three quarters of respondents saying digital transformation has impacted their work.

71 per cent believed digital transformation is leading to a change in the structure of how services are delivered and 33 per cent said that digital transformation is a big part of what they do.

However, the report also highlighted a number of barriers. The biggest barrier was a lack of digital training, with 53 per cent saying this was the biggest barrier to moving services online, compared to 43 per cent in 2015. Respondents also said that digitisation was hindered by a lack of performance targets, with 25 per cent saying there wasn’t a clear way to measure success.

John Baskerville, managing director, government, at Sopra Steria commented: “There is an opportunity for the UK to continue to lead the way globally on digital transformation within government. The signs are positive – civil servants are starting to think differently about digital transformation, but the warning signs are also there.

“The next five years need to see a further move from just front-end improvements towards fully transformative digital projects in government. A lack of consistency in measuring digital transformation needs to be addressed urgently as digital within government matures. Skills and resources are becoming an increasingly critical issue; support is needed to help departments cope with the new demands their staff are facing.

“The benefits of digital transformation can truly be realised as government moves beyond just citizen engagement and into the wider reform of end-to-end business processes.”