Responsible Citizens - Emphasising a more human approach to Managed Services

8th March 2021

Working collaboratively to sustain and enhance our Public Sector

When people think about ‘Managed Services’ they often refer to a hazily defined notion of outsourcing, a service disconnected from the business with little flexibility in scope. In reality, these services have developed vastly over the last few years to provide much more agile & flexible models.

The recent pandemic has changed many things for many of us, none more so than the way we use IT. This has affected the Managed Service model, with more flexibility required to adapt to a ‘new normal’ and the unpredictability of a changing world.

This is not uncommon though; most of my career has revolved around developing what a good Managed Service looks like, utilising innovative technologies, driving efficiencies, and how to cultivate the best thinking between our organisations to deliver real outcomes for customers. However, the last twelve months has asked for much more than that. There has been a seismic shift in our perception of public services, with a new appreciation for those who provide them and offer the ability to quickly change the underlying technology that supports them.

Acknowledging ‘our’ public services

Clapping for the NHS made us value the hard work the frontline teams do and the fantastic services they provide. It has shifted the mind set from us being ‘customers’ of these services to being ‘custodians’ of them. We have started to think about how our actions may affect the NHS and other frontline services, such as making better use of other services like 111 to reduce the burden for non-urgent cases.

C-19 has taught us that we all have a duty to support our public services in the best way possible

This has had me thinking about the services Civica provide. As technologists and citizens, how can ’Civicans’, create better services for the Public Sector?

During the past year, I have worked with many Public Sector authorities, all highlighting similar challenges; a need to create better communities, digitally focused services, streamline IT costs and improve efficiencies of existing staff – to name a few. All while services are stretched. That is a huge challenge.

Using a third party seems the obvious choice but there is often a reluctance to use external support, and it is not surprising. The many news stories relating to controversially awarded PPE contracts mean we all sit uncomfortably in our chairs during the six’oclock news. As citizens we all feel unfairly treated if public spend doesn’t demonstrate value for money.

Then there is the challenge of contract terms. Often our customers require Managed Services on a short-term basis. They want a service stabilising, transforming and preparing for a steady state of business as usual, but this isn’t really in the Managed Services mould, with its connotations of an outsourced service.

A more human solution

The solution is simple; use the best of Civica specialist skills for the bespoke transformation tasks and to prepare services for business as usual. Then, take back control at a time to suit you. No over-commitment, no over spending, no long-term lock in. The best of both worlds.

London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) engaged with Civica to support its move towards agile working and remote access of corporate resources. To date, 95% of LLDC’s users are now laptop based and the organisation has seen a 22% reduction in print volumes, supporting its sustainability objectives. Made possible by strong collaborative working with no underlying agenda.

What is in it for Civica? A simple commitment to sustain and enhance vital public services, whilst adapting to higher demand, greater expectation and an accelerating digital world for all.

Sounds positive - but how does it work in practice?

As a technology and sector leader, Civica’s skills will supplement your existing teams. We’ll undertake the tasks that may be either cost-prohibitive to your organisation or where there is a skills gap in your organisation. We then work with your teams to design and document the services and processes we implement, meaning your teams are involved in the creation and delivery.

Undertaking this type of approach provides your teams with new skills. But also means you can transition the services back in-house at a time to suit you.

Citizens delivering Managed Services. Certainly nothing like the hazy view of corporate outsourcing.

Matthew Jennings works within Civica’s Technology Services business as Customer Strategy Director. Matt is passionate about aligning strategy with technology to deliver innovative solutions that meet business challenges.

Phone: 07890205913

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