Supporting collaboration between digital leaders and other key professions
Even in a research project covering digital issues, it’s important that some of our findings reach other audiences. Digital transformation depends on reforms to wider organisational structures and business processes – so it can’t succeed without the active support of departmental heads and other professional leaders, such as those working in finance, programme management, procurement and HR.
Supporting interdepartmental and cross-profession collaboration is one of GGF’s core goals, and through our editorial coverage and events programme we can help inform civil service leaders about how best to facilitate digital transformation and dismantle the barriers to progress.
The Digital Leaders report identifies two immediate opportunities to shape GGF Summits, serving the heads of finance departments and national civil service leaders respectively.
Government Finance Summit 2022
In recent years, civil service technology professionals have embraced a digital world – leaving traditional IT working practices behind, and adopting techniques such as open source software and user-focused design. They’ve steered away from commissioning monolithic, predefined IT systems from a handful of big firms, instead using in-house staff and small businesses to develop new services by iteration and experiment. And they’ve begun building cross-departmental services that better meet user needs while cutting transaction costs.
However, few civil service-wide processes have fully adjusted to these changed working practices or the unique requirements of digital technologies. Cross-government business planning, budget approval and procurement systems must be aligned with good practice in digital programme management – so finance departments have a key role to play in supporting transformation. At this Government Finance Summit session, finance leaders will explore how best to adapt to the needs of digital while safeguarding value for money and effective risk management.
Global Government Summit 2022
Digital leaders may be charged with transforming systems and services – but those operations are almost always controlled by others. So no digital leader can achieve their goals without the active support and participation of other senior managers, particularly ministers and departmental leaders. But organisational leaders must balance their interest in digital transformation with other priorities such as those around service continuity, balancing budgets and addressing ministers’ priorities. And today’s leadership selection and performance management systems don’t always reward the skills and attitudes required to implement digital reforms.
So heads of civil service face a set of complex tasks – including developing a leadership cadre ready and able to take ownership of digital reforms, and reforming cross-government systems around the needs of digital while respecting accountabilities and value for money. Informed by digital leaders, this Global Government Summit session will explore how national civil service leaders can create the right environment for digital transformation.