UK Government launches scheme to improve public services

UK Government launches scheme to improve public services

The role of IT suppliers will be key in encouraging cultural change in government sector

The government has launched a new scheme to improve public services which will have a significant affect on IT suppliers delivering systems to the sector.

The Customer Service Excellence (CSE) standard will help encourage a move towards public services centred around citizens' needs, rather than the needs of the state.

The aim is to encourage public sector organisations to deliver services based on a genuine understanding of the requirements of citizens, according to Tim Watson, minister for transformational government.

"The standard is designed to help public services deliver the culture change we are all determined to see," he said.

"CSE will give organisations vital tools to assess their current service and identify ways in which they can improve to ensure an approach that is truly focused around their customers."

The standard will assess organisations on five points:

- Personalisation of services.

- Collaboration with public.

- Retraining staff.

- Leadership and commitment.

- Accountability to the public.

The scheme will mean IT suppliers will have to help create a cultural change in government, said Nick Kalisperas, director of transformational government at IT trade association Intellect.

"As well as providing technology, the challenge will be over coming cultural issues – it's about more than just a ticked-box approach," he said. "A lot of it will be about training staff."

The standard will replace the outdated Charter Mark scheme, which stops this summer.