Councils must be able to demonstrate best value for money from IT investment, not only in unit costs, but in terms of the contribution that technology can make to solving the big challenges.
Collectively, local government spends around £2 billion per annum on IT, with £1 billion of this spent on sourcing and supporting software applications. This sum does not reflect the total financial influence that new technology and digital services can have across all budget headings. Councils must also be able to demonstrate best value for money from IT investment, not only in unit costs (where these are measurable), but in terms of the contribution that technology can make to solving the big challenges councils and communities face.
This IT Procurement Strategy has been developed and is owned by local government to be used to assist and promote value for money, economic growth, wider service delivery and social value.
In this the LGA supports councils in identifying and procuring the necessary digital technology, systems and tools by providing practical ideas, guidance and solutions in these areas.
The challenge for IT procurement is to create the agility and flexibility needed to meet the unprecedented demand for new technology and new ways of using technology in a way which manages risk and does not compromise probity or value.
Successful public service digital transformation therefore requires a strategic approach to redesign and reengineer on every level to make councils faster at doing things, more adaptable and able to share more information.
Many councils will be working to these strategic themes for IT and digital procurement already, or are working towards them. But even the very best performing councils should be constantly re-evaluating, inwardly challenging, learning and developing. This strategy is aimed at those seeking to be digital leaders as well as those not as advanced on their IT procurement journey. Every council can benefit from effective IT procurement, given the potential benefits of technology and digital for the whole sector, growing public demands and expectations, and the universal financial pressures being faced.
Above all, this category strategy aims to help IT and digital leaders maximise the opportunity of technology to transform local public services.