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Directgov 2010 and Beyond: Revolution not Evolution

November 23, 2010

Today Government has responded to Martha Lane Fox’s strategic review of Directgov, which advises how the Government can use the internet to both communicate and interact better with citizens whilst also delivering significant efficiency savings from channel shift.


Martha’s recommendations were set out at the end of September this year.  The report and the Government’s initial response, argue for a channel shift that will increasingly see public services provided digitally ‘by default’.
The report recommendations argue for the simplification and strengthening of digital Government to improve the quality and consequently use of Government channels.

 

Summary of Key Recommendations:


  • Make Directgov the government front end for all departments’ transactional online services to citizens and businesses, with the teeth to mandate cross government solutions, set standards and force departments to improve citizens’ experience of key transactions.
  • Simplifying the user experience of digital public services by making all of government’s transactional services available through Directgov.
  • Ensuring online government information and services are available wherever people are on the web by opening up applications and services to other organisations
  • Appointing a new CEO for Digital in the Cabinet Office to drive change and bring together existing teams working in this area.
  • Asking  Directgov and Business Link to create a plan of what would be involved to converge the sites into a single domain

 

Shifting 30% of government service delivery contracts to digital channels has the potential to deliver gross annual savings of more than £1.3 billion, rising to £2.2 billion if 50% of contacts shifted to digital.  In line with this move, there will be radical improvement to government Internet services to provide higher quality and more convenient 24/7 services to users.

 

Martha Lane Fox said: “Government should take advantage of the more open, agile and cheaper digital technologies to deliver simpler and more effective digital services to users, particularly to disadvantaged groups who are some of the heaviest users of government services.”

In his response to the report, Minister for the Cabinet Office, Francis Maude said “The shifttowards online services also has the power to transform the relationship between Government and individuals. As Martha Lane Fox’s insightful report shows, there is no excuse for not making quality online services the default solution for providing services for people needing Government services. Not only are services more convenient and cheaper, but they can be better and more personalised.”

 

  • For full Directgov Strategic Review report click here
  • To see Francis Maude’s official response click here
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