Survey reveals ignorance of cloud
Two-thirds of civil servants in the UK have no knowledge of the UK Government’s G-Cloud initiative, according to a survey. The study, carried out by cloud provider Six Degrees Group, found that 66 per cent of public sector workers had no idea the framework existed, despite the programme being in place for two years.
The research, conducted at Civil Service Live, the series of learning events organised by Dods, also found the UK Government is still not doing enough to educate civil servants on the benefits of using the procurement platform.
“These statistics demonstrate that as we move towards the end of 2014, the Government still needs to do a lot more to educate all public sector departments on G-Cloud,” said Campbell Williams, group strategy and marketing director at Six Degrees Group.
“The initiative has the power to transform radically how authorities interact with cloud providers. However, as the findings from [the] surveys have shown, the public sector remains unaware of the many benefits that using the G-Cloud framework can provide. It’s a framework designed specifically for the public sector, so it’s essential that they know what it is and how it can benefit them."
Holyrood Connect’s 5th annual Cloud Computing in the Public Sector Conference is on 23 September in Edinburgh: cloud.holyrood.com
Council plans wholesale transformation
Manchester City Council is pushing ahead with mobile working for staff after pilots identified potential annual savings of almost £1m across just two departments. The council said that the pilots in the neighbourhood services and social work departments achieved “great success” by allowing staff to operate using tablets.
Following the trials, the neighbourhoods department estimated that around £320,000 a year could be saved by mobile working. The calculation was based on time saving calculations as well as £6,000 a year on printing and £28,000 on fuel and mileage savings each year.
The council said that 130 social workers also tested mobile solutions supporting more efficient use of time. Because more cases could be seen per day, it estimated that £600,000 a year could be saved as a result of working digitally in the department. Another pilot in the democratic services department tested mobile devices when collecting voting registration data on the doorstep.
A digital workplace strategy, enabling all council users to move between locations and devices more easily, will be introduced in October.
All staff will get new devices, a new email solution, plus collaborative tools to help share information with the NHS and police. It will also allow quicker login times, according to the report.
“Today staff and members are office and desk bound using software that is too slow, old and often seems to break and ICT is managing too many different devices from PCs, Wyse terminals, BlackBerrys, iPads, multiple laptops, etc,” the report concluded.
The council said that its ICT department currently has 36 transformation projects in progress, a threefold increase on last year. “This clearly shows ICT’s role at the heart of the organisation supporting transformational change,” it said.
Holyrood Connect’s Mobile Working Conference is on 7 October in Edinburgh: mobileworking.holyrood.com