75% of local government authorities embrace tech, but lack IT skills

With 87 per cent identifying efficiency savings as the highest priority within their organisations, it is clear that government authorities are feeling the pressure to meet budget cuts and ‘do more with less’.

But only 25 per cent felt that investing in people was a high priority. The research also reveals a significant of skills needed to improve the delivery of public services.

For example, 41 per cent of those surveyed felt that IT literacy for all staff was important, but only seven per cent cited that such skills currently existed at a sufficient level.

Respondents identified collaboration (94 per cent) and mobile working (86 per cent) as key for improving the delivery of public services in the future, both areas that would require high levels of IT literacy and innovation to ensure efficient implementation.

Ian Dalton, president, Global Government and Health, BT Global Services, said: “It’s encouraging to see that three quarters of public sector organisations have already embraced technology to help transform their services. But technology alone can’t continue to sustain the public sector mantra of ‘do more with less’. We need to be more creative, using solutions such as mobile working and collaboration technologies to transform how public services are delivered.

“However, it’s clear from this research that public sector investment should be balanced across both technology and people, particularly investing in skills such as IT literacy. Many digital inclusion and IT skills training programmes exist, but focus on citizens, not on the development of employees. Improving these areas will help ensure organisations have the abilities required to work efficiently with new technology and continue to improve and streamline the delivery of public services.”

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