Things I've watched over the weekend

Published in notes

This week I've taken the time to watch a few things and write a tweet thread that proved popular.

Inquiry: Challenges In Implementing Digital Change

First up, was the Public Accounts Committee inquiry into Challenges In Implementing Digital Change. The committee used the written evidence well to ask the witness well-formed questions. Yet one member demonstrated the lack of understanding that one of the pieces of evidence opened with:

"We draw attention to the lack of awareness and understanding across senior levels in government (both politicians and civil servants) about what ‘digital transformation’ actually is." - CDC0001 - Challenges in implementing digital change

Dan Carden MP, instead of using the evidence to fill in his knowledge gaps, gave his ideas on how to implement digital change:

Surely starting every system from scratch in one department and the numbers of failures we've seen, if you were creating a system from the beginning wouldn't you set one system up across government - video

Overtime, we've learnt small is generally better (don't prematurely optimise though). But thanks for your ideas Dan.

The whole inquiry is worth a watch. The witnesses do well, which is encouraging, yet frequent naive questions or points made by the committee somewhat proves the point of the inquiry. Ironic.

Consciously Hybrid, the film

I found this film via Tech Market View, who reviewed the Netflix-style documentary:

The film does indeed capture very well the challenges organisations face as they attempt to juggle legacy debt alongside new cloud platforms, and the dual IT environments these create.

HPE have a shiny manifesto too, which does repeats the themes many people say in the public sector, yet nothing gets done about them, e.g. "Current challenges such as legacy procurement and budget processes that are predominantly focussed on capital expenditure, only perpetuate the budget drain caused by legacy IT."

I was nodding at everything Tracey Jessup (CDIO of UK Parliament) was saying... "Work with treasury to think how to alter the Green Book and make sure it can best meet what's needed in the current cloud environment whilst also hitting everything it needs to around transparency for the public and the treasury."

The documentary features many more public sector people. Good to know there's a growing consensus on what the major systemic blockers to digital transformation are.

Suggestion: formally detach the DDaT function from Civil Service pay controls

I did a tweet thread! And it picked up some interest. What do you think Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO)?