Headlines: October 4th, 2007

Information technology suppliers have been challenged to work with the public sector to find ways to deliver better services and meet growing public expectations. The Welsh Assembly’s Finance and Public Service Delivery Minister, Andrew Davies, threw down the challenge to businesses at a meeting in Swansea.

He called on suppliers to help public bodies work with public bodies to ‘come up with solutions that put the citizen centre-stage’ and he told them. “The challenge we face as a country is how to achieve a dynamic economy that supports sustainable communities, while at the same time developing a healthy, thriving population. How our public services are delivered is key to this vision.”

Mr. Davies said citizens’ expectations of the public sector and the services it provided were constantly increasing and they were no longer content to be passive consumers. That meant it was important to find imaginative ways to deliver better public services while at the same time being more efficient and strategic in the use of resources. “The challenge now is not how much we spend, but how we spend it. Innovation and collaboration will be essential,” he added.

The Minister pointed to some examples of projects that were improving public access to and the efficiency of public services, including the Access and Transformation Strategy and Action Plan, which set out actions designed to lead to ICT supporting improved access to services with people the main focus and the proposed Public Sector Broadband Aggregation. “Everything we do, both within the Assembly Government and at every level of public service in Wales, must be driven by the citizen. Nothing less is good enough.”