#ShareDigital19 – sharing experiences and common challenges – our takeaways from this year’s event

21st Mar, 2019

More than 250 IT, digital and transformation peers gathered at this @Socitm #ShareDigital19 event to discuss innovation. We were delighted to be invited to the event to host a roundtable session with our customer, Cumbria County Council. Here’s a round up of takeaways from the event

Fearful and hopeful…

Chris Naylor, CEO of Barking and Dagenham (@publicnaylor), delivered an inspiring keynote on why digital needs to get personal. He called on the audience to match their use of digital to the specific needs of their citizens and areas. He offered the audience a candid review of the challenges of being a London Borough. It seems that a borough, only 25 minutes from the UK’s commercial hub, should be able to enjoy economic growth. Instead, the council is deeply challenged to deliver change. Their goal is to improve the rankings in all areas to be on par with the other more affluent London borough counterparts.

Chris showed us how using considered thought, digital helps them collect real-time accurate data. This identifies repeat patterns which in turn creates useful insight. As the data is examined, it helps the council understand where its people are in their lives. ‘Problems’ of the past and present are re-examined to see if new solutions can be found to tackle the root cause.

Removing the problem removes the expense. Whereas just doing the ‘right things’ is likely only to answer the immediate need.

A day of small round tables …

ShareDigital is a great way for digital champions to share experiences and discuss common challenges. This created a different buzz to the day. Delegates used an online planner to create their own agenda tailored around their specific interests. Conversation and interaction was lively!

An urgency to cost-effective transformation…

Kate Hurr, Digital and Innovation Manager at Cumbria County Council, led a workshop with our CTO, Richard Farrell. Cumbria is leading the way with our flexible Low-code technology platform across the council to quickly deliver county-wide services. (What’s Low-code you ask? Please see the Socitm and Low-code Q&A by Richard Farrell). Low-code enables Cumbria to be in control, be agile and work collaboratively.

The team is embracing an agile process. They can easily iterate to add functionality. Their business analysts work collaboratively with IT, to maintain governance and security and removing shadow IT to reduce risks.

She also discussed how the council has been growing their teams’ skills and working with the challenge of cultural change.

You can view Kate’s presentation as a slide share.

Positive feedback ….

One delegate told us our round table was “The ONE thing that stood out on my day. The way that Cumbria and Netcall provided insight and a real-life example was very helpful.”

Low-code trending for 2019

Early in 2019, Socitm published their tech trends for the public sector for the year ahead. Jos Creese suggested “The best IT suppliers will empathise with the challenges of the public sector, not just understand business opportunity and technology possibility.”

His advice to suppliers is to tackle small projects and provide as much client support as possible. And to support customers manage the amount of change with which they are grappling.

We were delighted to see Low-code as one of the ‘9 technology trends’ for 2019. To learn more, read our Q&A with Richard Farrell.

We look forward to our next @Socitm event . Meeting peers and learning from each other really does make a difference.

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