Public Services > Central Government

Public sector fails to support digital transformation with cloud

David Bicknell Published 26 October 2016

Survey argues public sector execs see digital transformation as biggest challenge of the coming year - but many are failing to prioritise cloud initiatives


A new survey has argued that although total sales on the government’s G-Cloud Digital Marketplace have reached £1.39bn, over half (58%) of public sector IT executives have not used G-Cloud in the past year. And only 8 per cent of executives have used the Digital Marketplace more than five times in the last year.

The finding is revealed in a study into the state of public sector technology and use of the digital framework carried out by British cloud and network provider Exponential-e. The study queried IT professionals across the UK, covering local and central government, health, emergency services, education and the third sector.

The research found that a majority of IT executives (57%) rate digital transformation as being of considerable or high importance for their organisation, while over half (54%) also view compliance and security as a matter of importance, indicating that the need to improve data handling practices is an essential element of digitisation for public sector IT teams. However, only around a quarter (27%) indicated that cloud adoption was an important challenge for the coming year.

The study also found that a third (33%) of respondents indicated that concerns over data sovereignty would stop them from using public cloud services as part of a digital transformation programme. The survey regarded this as a key issue given the uncertainty of the UK’s political status following its decision to exit the European Union, with 41% of public sector IT executives believing that Brexit will have a significant impact on their organisation.

David Lozdan, head of public sector at Exponential-e said, “Many public sector organisations are missing the opportunity which cloud provides to cost-effectively support innovative digital transformation initiatives. According to government data , out of the £1.39bn total sales since the launch of G-Cloud, central government departments have been responsible for £1.06bn, compared with only £73m from local authorities and £245m from the wider public sector. In order for these organisations to achieve their digitisation goals, there is clearly a gap to be filled when it comes to engaging within the G-Cloud framework to access secure, flexible cloud services capable of servicing the sector’s growing needs.”

“With questions over what Brexit means for the future of UK still looming large, data protection regulation is set to become increasingly complex as the government negotiates the departure,” Lozdan added.



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