Cross-government service communities to be created by GDS

The Government Digital Service (GDS) has outlined how it is working with organisations across government to pilot a new way of working.

A blog post on the subject says that the GDS is forming networks of people with different skills and from different departments, who will work together to improve end-to-end services that cross departmental boundaries. These networks will be known as ‘Service Communities’.

“We already have communities of practice across government, that bring together people working in design or user research, for example,” the blog’s authors say. “The new Service Communities will bring together people from across these professional boundaries. People in the communities will be united by the service they work on.

“We’ve started to test this concept with the ‘Starting a Business’ community, which brings together people working to help users start a business. They’re people in different roles and from different organisations – such as HMRC, Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).


Prompted by research

The blog adds that this latest move was prompted by recent research into how government services get made. This research showed that there wasn’t a single, coherent way that government services are made. Instead, there is variation from department to department. And there are silos between different areas and professions – for example, between policy and delivery.

“It’s clear that we need to address this issue, particularly as the Government Transformation Strategy sets out a commitment to ‘build services that run seamlessly across government’,” it adds.

GDS is currently running a number of projects that support the development of end-to-end services. For example, it is updating the Service Standard to take into account whole services. It is also starting to show full service journeys on GOV.UK and working to help departments publish data about end-to-end services.

The blog can be read in full here.

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