Heather Wheeler – 2022 Statement on Transforming for a Digital Future Roadmap

The statement made by Heather Wheeler, the Parliamentary Secretary at the Cabinet Office, in the House of Commons on 9 June 2022.

Later today, I will publish “Transforming for a Digital Future: Government’s 2022-25 Roadmap for Digital and Data”, which sets out an ambitious plan to ensure that, by 2025, we deliver a transformed, more efficient digital Government that provides better outcomes for everyone. I have requested that a copy of the full text be deposited in the Libraries of both Houses in Parliament.

The importance of digital and data

Digital and data are key to unlocking many of this Government’s priorities, from generating efficiencies to net zero and levelling up. Better digital systems and access to data will allow smaller teams across Government to work faster, make better decisions, and deliver better policies. Modern technology will minimise waste and reduce our reliance on paper-based forms. A more digitally skilled civil service, working across the UK, will ensure that citizens get access to the same great services no matter where they live.

The opportunity

The Government have some excellent digital services and examples of digital transformation, but we still need to harness the full potential of digital transformation at scale. Many services are in need of improvement to deliver the right outcomes, our technology is in need of refreshing to give value for money, we have significant and persistent gaps in skills and expertise, and our business systems are in need of reform to keep pace with the digital age.

If we maintain the current course, we will miss opportunities to deliver the experiences and outcomes that citizens expect and we have committed to deliver, we will see talented digital and data professionals choosing to work elsewhere, and we will miss out on efficiency savings.

Cross-Government support and collaboration

This road map has been collectively agreed by the Cabinet Economic and Domestic Implementation Committee.

The road map is the result of an unprecedented level of collaboration from digital leaders across Government. The Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) in the Cabinet Office has worked with representatives from Departments to develop the road map, including regular engagement with the permanent secretary-level Digital and Data Board.

CDDO will continue to work closely with Departments to support and monitor progress against the road map . Each mission has a senior civil servant “executive sponsor” who will act as an advocate for that mission and support work to progress against the specific commitments.

As a result, I am confident that there is sufficient support and momentum behind this road map to ensure we will meet all of the commitments it sets out by 2025.

What we will deliver by 2025

The road map sets out a bold vision for change which is supported by a set of clear, feasible and measurable commitments that Departments have collectively agreed to deliver between now and 2025.

By 2025 the most frequently used critical services will have great user experience and incorporate efficient processes that reduce their cost to run. We will provide a single, efficient and accessible digital identity process for citizens, and ensure that data which is central to priority Government objectives will be safely shared and used to improve policy and service delivery. We will build digital technology in a consistent way, improving the quality of what we build and our speed to deployment. We will be an employer of choice for digital talent, with highly skilled teams and leaders, and have funding structures and delivery approaches that enable and incentivise modern, efficient and user-centric investment and high-quality services.

The pace of technological change and the growing expectations of citizens and businesses mean we must renew our focus and go further than ever before to realise the opportunities presented by digital transformation. I am confident that, by fulfilling the commitments set out in the road map, we will be able to do exactly that.