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This week at GDS

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Mike Beaven talks about the Sprint Alpha conference where we welcomed the Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude, the Head of the Civil Service, Sir Bob Kerslake, and Permanent Secretaries of the transacting Departments to discuss progress to date of the 25 exemplar Transformation projects. GDS also launched a new dashboard with information about those projects and a Quarterly update on Digital Strategies in all government departments.Sir Jeremy Heywood visited GDS to launch the Civil Service Quarterly and Mike also mentions the monthly all staff meeting with visitors from the Office of the Public Guardian and the Department for International Development.

Full transcript below:

Matt: Hello again Mike

Mike: Hello there

Matt: How are you?

Mike: Very well thank you

Matt: What have we been up to at GDS this week?

Mike: It’s been a very busy week. So yesterday we held our Sprint Alpha event which is basically our second in a series of conferences. We had Francis Maude, the Minister, speaking there,we had David Gauke from HMRC, talking about the work they are doing there and we had the Permanent Secretaries from the transacting Departments there. And that whole event really was around talking about the 25 exemplar projects that make up the Transformation Programme. We published a new dashboard which is GOV.UK/Transformation where you can find out about those projects, how big they are and the progress they are making. So a very exciting day, very big day for GDS and all of the Departments we’ve been working with for the last 6 months on these projects.

Obviously a lot happened yesterday with all of the different workshops and sessions that went on so we’ll be getting some material out. I did a blog yesterday talking about the event , we’ll be putting together some videos summarising the event so we’ll see some more of that.

We also published the Quarterly Update on the Digital Strategies across all of the Departments so that information is now available online so you can search that and see what good progress we’re making across all of the Departments outside of just the 25 exemplars.

Matt: Excellent. We also had a couple of visitors into GDS this week.

Mike: Yes, we had Sir Jeremy Heywood who is the Cabinet Secretary and he was over launching the Civil Service Quarterly which is now an online blog not a paper publication or anything like that so that’s a really good part of Civil Service Reform, doing things differently, doing things online.

Matt: Excellent. Where can you read that?

Mike: You can get that at

Matt: And we’ve just finished up the all staff meeting?

Mike: Yes, we’ve had our monthly gathering with the whole team and we had a couple of really good visitors. We had the Office of the Public Guardian come over who on the 1st of July launched their Lasting Power of Attorney Service as a public beta and are progressing about 900 applications per week through that service. So we had Kit Collingwood, who’s the Service Manager and Chris Mitchell, from GDS, talking through how that went and we also had John Adam from DFID, which is the people who deal with overseas aid and development talking through some amazing work they are doing publishing data about where aid money goes and the difference it makes which is quite a humbling experience.

And we also had some new starters. We’ve had Mike joining the Performance Platform as a designer and we also had a chap called Dave Norris join the Transformation team who’s been working with the DVLA down in Swansea.

And above all of that, as I say, everything pales into signifigance that we managed to retain the 5 a side trophy in the  annual Civil Service Sports Day so well done to the team.

Matt: Excellent. Until next time.

Mike: Thank you very much

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