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January 7, 2021

How the public sector can speed up digital transformation

A new report by Deloitte has outlined five areas that public sector leaders can focus on if they want to speed up government’s digital transformation.

The report was the result of a survey of more than 1200 government officials from around the world, and interviews with another 130 government leaders and digital experts.

Develop a clear strategy

Having a roadmap that details the path to attain digital transformation goals is vital. It must address all of the elements that contribute to digital transformation: culture, leadership, workforce, and procurement.

Even more importantly, Deloitte says that any strategy must also include a way to track the organisation’s progress and measure it against those goals. Without that information, the roadmap is less useful.

Be user-centric

Deploying effective digital tools that work for everyone starts with the user, says Deloitte. In government’s case, this means citizens.

Deloitte’s survey results indicated some governments are not engaging their citizens when it comes to the services being designed, and also that the design skills needed to appeal to end users are often not present inside the departments attempting to deliver citizen-focused digital services.

The solution to this is for governments to explore user-centric, agile development methodologies.

“This is very much the reason Boxfusion’s public sector applications have been so successful,” says Xolile Ndlangana, Boxfusion’s Marketing Director. “Everything we do, from project conception to design to implementation, revolves around the end users of our solutions.”

Make time and space for innovation

As organisations become more accustomed to using digital solutions, they tend to want to use them more and more. Companies that do this actively encourage an internal culture of collaboration and innovation.

Something that can help build such a culture even more, says Deloitte, is for organisations to allocate spaces for their workers to actively collaborate on new ideas and solutions.

By creating time and space for ideas to flow and employees to share insights, a culture of regular innovation can be encouraged.

Develop the right skills

Deloitte’s survey identified a lack of digital skills as a serious impediment to government taking full advantage of the benefits of a proper digital transformation.

To remedy this, they recommend that governments should employ digital strategists to focus on figuring out what digital skills are needed, and develop a plan to acquire them.

Adjust procurement processes

The survey also shone light on the fact that government organisations want some big changes in procurement processes.

Chief among these desires are less restrictive Ts and Cs, a more decentralised procurement model, and agile development.

Deloitte recommends that any proposed changes to procurement processes should keep these in mind when reform is on the table.