GDS announces plans to enhance Technology Code of Practice

digital services

The Government Digital Service (GDS) has revealed plans to make its Technology Code of Practice better for local government organisations.

In a blog post it says the developments are necessary to ensure guidance and standards must keep pace to stay relevant and useful for departments.

The Technology Code of Practice (TCoP) plays an important part in helping government organisations buy and build technology, and is the benchmark for Spend Controls for departmental spending on digital and IT services.

Writing in the post, Jonathan Middleton said: “At the end of last year, we started work on making the TCoP better. We did some initial user research, and are continuing to do more detailed research with as many departments as possible.

“So far, we’ve learned that teams across government would like clearer information on what is classed as a ‘standard’, and what we mean by best practice advice. They’d also like more specific examples about implementing the principles.”

Middleton added that legacy systems will also be considered. “We often have to buy and build technology in the context of these legacy systems, so while solving each unique issue isn’t practical the guidance will aim to support the main challenges teams face,” he said.

“We don’t have a monopoly on good practice, so we’ll be working with departments and organisations to look for good implementations of technology that follow our principles.”

Middleton concluded by saying: “The basis of the principles aren’t changing, and we’re still committed to standards that help government buy and build great technology. What we expect will change is the structure of the document as we work on providing greater clarity and more guidance and support for departments. We’ll also be working with Spend Controls to make the principles’ support their work as clearly as possible.

“We’re taking our proposals to the next Technology Leader’s Network meeting. As government’s senior technology decision-making body, they’ll play an important role in helping us realise our vision. We aim to have the next iteration out later this summer.”

Related reading