Enfield Council continues drive to be ‘Digital by Default’

Enfield Council has detailed how it is working in partnership with a managed IT, cloud and recovery services specialist to drive its ‘Digital by Default’ strategy.

Enfield Council has a strong reputation for technological innovation, and is focused on increasing engagement with citizens via digital platforms. Its pioneering Artificial Intelligence (AI) contact centre programme can answer citizens’ questions at 60% of the human cost, Enfield is the first council in the country to deploy such technology. To continue its sector leading work, the council needed a strong IT partner that could provide the robust, reliable, and agile IT infrastructure required.

Enfield Council’s current outsourcing agreement was coming to an end and with 320,000 constituents reliant upon the council’s services, constant availability is of vital importance. The council urgently needed a trusted partner that could deliver a flexible and robust solution with zero downtime.

Enfield Council chose Sungard AS to manage the transition and continued running of its complex hybrid IT infrastructure. The council says that this was so successful there was zero downtime of services – so much so that its own staff were unaware any transition had taken place.

Efficiency and cost-effectiveness were also key factors in the choice of Sungard AS. Government funding cuts meant that the council was under increased pressure to continue its great service at a reduced cost. Sungard AS delivered a pay-as-you-go enterprise cloud solution, meaning the council only pays for the cloud services it needs, allowing it to scale capacity up and down, as required.

The decision to partner with Sungard AS is already forecasted to achieve major cost-savings for the council, as well as over 30% efficiency gains. Sungard AS has further eliminated the IT infrastructure management burden from the council, allowing in-house staff to focus on satisfying the 18 service standard points required by “Digital by Default” status. Enfield Council is now working towards furthering its digital aims, all with the peace of mind that Sungard AS is supporting its critical IT systems.

 

No room for error

Steve Durbin, Interim Head of IT, Enfield Council, commented: “Our citizens rely on the council to be there when they need us. We cannot afford even the smallest amount of systems downtime. For example, if there’s no IT service on the day we pay housing benefit, it could mean eviction for some of our citizens. With individuals’ wellbeing and the council’s efficiency at stake, there really is no room for error. Through partnering with Sungard AS, citizens will always be able to access council services.

“Enfield is a vibrant, multicultural borough where English is not always the first language so being able to access council services via digital platforms, that are available in multiple languages, is essential. Sungard AS provides the robust infrastructure that allows the council to work towards meeting its digital goals, as well as supporting all of our citizens.”

Kathy Schneider, Chief Marketing Officer at Sungard Availability Services continued: “Enfield Council’s case is just one example of the challenges organisations are facing with hybrid IT infrastructure models. It is essential to have inbuilt resilience to maintain robust security and constant availability of services – whether running across digital or legacy IT platforms. Enfield citizens and council staff would settle for nothing less.

“Our recent research found that public sector IT decision makers felt that digital success equates to both increased customer satisfaction (49%) and revenue growth (33%). But with the IT landscape becoming more complex and legacy IT potentially holding back innovation, the road to digital transformation in the public sector isn’t straightforward. Without a datacentre strategy that can support both old and new IT functions, local governments will fail to meet their ‘digital by default’ ambitions. Pairing with a reliable partner means that Enfield can continue to achieve its goals while allowing Sungard AS to shoulder the concerns of core infrastructure management.”

Further information on Sungard AS’ work with Enfield Council can be found here.

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