Five considerations for UK organisations implementing the Shared Services Strategy
In early 2021 , the UK Government announced its Shared Services Strategy for Government . Satpal Biant , Head of Public Sector , UK & Ireland , SAP , provides insight into this , its effects on civil service and tips for businesses executing this strategy .
Taken at face value , the UK Government ’ s Shared Services Strategy is a muchneeded solution to a complex and common problem . For years , individual government organisations have operated in technological isolation – using different applications from diverse technology vendors to perform similar enterprise resource planning ( ERP ) functions involved in HR , finance , property and procurement .
Likewise , some ( primarily front-office ) functions have transitioned to the cloud while others ( usually back-office ) are still running with on-premises , legacy systems , adding to the government ’ s Technical Debt .
This siloed approach has fostered inefficiencies , increased complexity and has hampered organisations ’ ability to share data with each other . It has also made it difficult , if not impossible to track end-to-end processes across the government due to differences in the way data is captured and held .
( previously called ‘ Delivery ’), ‘ Matrix ’ ( previously called ‘ Policy ’) and ‘ HMRC-led ’.
The strategy provides a roadmap for more streamlined and harmonised services featuring cloud-based modern ERP systems that are user friendly and easily integrated .
“ It will allow civil services to deliver insights ; continuously improve to drive down costs ; develop accessible , intuitive and useful systems for civil servants ; and innovate and embrace competition ,” said Matthew Coats ,
BY MODERNISING AND TRANSFORMING SYSTEMS THROUGH CLOUD TRANSFORMATION , SERVICES ARE SIMPLIFIED , UNNECESSARY COSTS REMOVED AND CAPACITY IS CREATED .
Director-General , Government Business Services .
These problems have only been exacerbated by the pandemic as home working and isolation measures have created a greater reliance on digital services . This , in turn , has placed additional stress on civil servants who are constantly required to learn new skills to engage with and deliver citizen services and potentially move across departments within the civil service to support with capacity .
Announced in March 2021 , the government ’ s Shared Services Strategy for Government is designed to address these problems . It will consolidate digital services across five multi-department shared-services centres , categorised as ‘ Defence ’, ‘ Overseas ’, ‘ Synergy ’
The government has high aspirations for its Digital Transformation strategy – and rightfully so . Over the past decade , private enterprises have recognised enormous efficiency , integration and cost-saving benefits from similar cloudtransformation programmes . However , there are some considerations , unique to the public sector , which public sector change leaders must address before embarking on what will ideally be a longterm partnership between the organisations and the technology providers chosen to deliver results .
1 . Accept that change is inevitable
One of the key challenges that public sector organisations will likely face in their move
Satpal Biant , Head of Public Sector , UK & Ireland , SAP
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