https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2013/07/26/this-week-at-gds-40/

This week at GDS

Mike Beaven talks about the new version of the homepage for GOV.UK and the ongoing work to the performance platform as we move more government services onto it with six more Foreign and Commonwealth Office services now moved onto the platform. This week Mike went up to Scotland to meet the Student Loans Company, one of the 25 exemplar transformation projects, and took a look at their transformation business case. DVLA and Land Registry also went through the Digital by Default service standard assessment, with the results due in a week or so. On the visits front we welcomed Bryan Sivak over from Washington in the US. Bryan is the CTO (Chief Technology Officer) for their Department of Health and Human Services.

Full transcript below:

Interviewer:
Hello Mike. What have we been up to at GDS this week?

Mike Beaven:
Hi there. Another good week. I’ll start with GOV.UK; we’ve released a new version of the home page, which is pretty key, so I think everyone’s pretty happy with that. There are lots of new features to it, so well done to Stephen McCarthy and Edd Sowden and the rest of the GOV.UK team; really good work. I think the other main area is on the performance platform, which gradually we’re moving all the government services onto that, so we’ve got six more FCO – Foreign and Commonwealth Office services now moved onto that platform, so well done to Richard Sargeant and the whole team there.

Interviewer:
There’s been lots of work in the Transformation team as well.

Interviewer:
Yes, a couple of things, really. I’ve spent a few days up in Scotland with our colleagues in Student Loans, looking at their overall transformation business case, and working with the top team there. It’s really good that they’re really embracing using digital to change their business, and their CEO’s (Chief Operating Officer) very much behind them, so that was an interesting couple of days. On a more practical level, a couple of our exemplar services have gone through their Digital by Default service standard assessments, so DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) and the Land Registry service managers have been in with a panel of GDS experts for a fairly gruelling 4-hour panel assessment of how that service is shaping up, and we’ll get the results out in the next week or so as to how that’s looking.

Interviewer:
We also had a visitor to OCTO (Office of the Chief Technology Officer) and Transformation this week.

Mike:
Yes we did. We had Bryan Sivak over from Washington in the US, and he’s the CTO (Chief Technology Officer) for their Department of Health and Human Services. He visited the 6th and the 7th floors and had a look at how we’re doing things in GDS.

Interviewer:
Next week, you’ll be visiting other parts of the UK as well.

Mike:
Yes, yes, so next week I’m off to Wales, so off to Swansea, looking at a couple of things down there. Firstly we’ve got quite a lot of engagement with their Enterprise-type technology, so meeting their CTO down there and looking at the work we’re doing around the operational side of their technology, and also meeting the teams working on the exemplars. I’ll probably spend a good three or four hours going through that with the people down there. Back end of this week, early next week, we’re working on what sort of exemplar delivery looks like as well, so getting us to a point where we know a) what the scope of all of these 25 projects is, and what they’re going to cost, and what they’re going to save, and what they’re going to do for people; secondly, how we’re going to work with the departments to deliver those over the next sort of 18 months or so.

Interviewer:
Good news for the GDS cyclists.

Mike:
Yes, the guys were out last Sunday, and I think they did a pretty good time amongst them. I think they increased, remarkably, by about an hour on last year’s time, so they’ve all been training hard. I think we also won an another bike race as well last weekend, which is the Tour de France, which is good for the country as well. But I don’t think there were any GDS-ers involved in that.

Interviewer:
We’ve also had a few new starters this week.

Mike:
Yes. We’re doing really well, now. We’re getting a lot more people on board, and that’s testament to the guys in the recruitment team and all the good work they’re doing, so that’s great. Sadly we have one person leaving us, who’s Ross Ferguson, who’s moving way out west. We wish him all the best in his new venture.

Interviewer:
Until next time.

Mike:
Thank you.

2 comments

  1. Nick Holmes (@nickholmes)

    What's happened to the Inside Government home page formerly at http://www.gov.uk/government ? The bottom section of the main home page doesn't do the trick.

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