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Smart and connected digital strategy 2018-22

Building a smart and connected NPT

A digital revolution is taking place across the world.

We want to make sure that our county borough takes full advantage of the benefits of new technologies.

This strategy sets out the next steps we intend to take to make our county borough smart and connected.

Cllr Doreen Jones
Cabinet Member for Corporate Services and Equality December 2018

Our digital ambition

The Council has set three priorities for making our county borough smart & connected:

Priority 1

Transforming the way we deliver our functions/services and increasing use of the Council's online functions/services by residents;

Priority 2

Contributing to the development of favourable conditions for economic growth in the county borough;

Priority 3

Embracing a "digital first" approach to the way we support our workforce.

Principles - People

  • Digital thinking will be embedded across the whole Council - we will adopt an approach which is 'digital first' significantly reducing reliance on more traditional processes and ways of working;
  • Digital services will be co-designed with users - our approach will be customer-centric;
  • We will embrace collaboration as a means of giving users better experiences of dealing with us - external collaboration, including cross-sectoral collaboration, will help us become more efficient and productive;
  • We will work to remove the barriers to digital participation for those who are digitally excluded

Principles - Place

  • We will work to ensure broadband and wifi infrastructure is available to an acceptable standard in all parts of the county borough
  • We will look to address the barriers people and organisations face to participate online
  • We will work with our schools and our partners to ensure that all residents of the county borough can develop the skills and confidence they need to benefit from the digital revolution; and
  • We will test our proposals for change thoroughly to ensure that the benefits we want to deliver are sustainable and directly support the Council's well-being objectives


Principles - Data

  • We will maximise the value of data and analytics to drive service change and innovation;
  • Our approach will be open by default;
  • We will ensure data is secure to gain trust and confidence in our digital programmes, with access to data controlled to ensure data is only accessed and shared appropriately;
  • Data will only be held as long as is relevant;

Principles - Technology

  • ICT will continue to be an enabler of service change and innovation not just a curator of the ICT infrastructure;
  • Our infrastructure will be fit for the digital age and future ICT investment decisions will take full account of the rapid changes taking place across the ICT and digital sectors;
  • Testing, learning and iterating will be the way we will approach new developments, ensuring that we can prototype and innovate as a matter of course;
  • We will adopt open data and open source policies to support collaboration and to stimulate innovation;

Priority 1

Transforming the way we deliver our functions / services and increasing use of the Council's online functions / services by residents;

  • Establish a citizen account to help people use the Council's online services and to ensure the Council has a better insight into the way people use Council services;
  • Extend the range of Council services and information available online based on a thorough understanding of what matters to residents;
  • Actively encourage residents to use the Council's online services and information as their preferred choice -promote "Digital First" in all Council communications;
  • Invest in a data science function to improve the Council's understanding of residents' needs and preferences and use the data products to inform and stimulate new innovations in service delivery.

Priority 2

Contributing to the development of favourable conditions for economic growth in the county borough;

  • Ensure all young people are equipped with the digital knowledge, skills and confidence to fully participate in a global economy. Promote equal participation in STEM
    (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects to boys and girls;
  • Ensure adults are able to access the learning and development needed to fully participate in the global economy and to reduce inequality in access to services;
  • Maximise the benefits of the Swansea Bay City Deal, helping to create a fully connected region which is at the forefront of digital innovation;
  • Support businesses at all stages of their development to successfully operate within a digital economy to include the use of digital technologies to transform the processes through which organisations transact with the Council.

Priority 3

Embracing a 'digital first' approach to the way we support our workforce;

  • Transform internal processes/services through a prioritised programme of digital change to shift work activities onto digital, self-service platforms. Create all new internally-focused services and processes on a digital only platform;
  • Ensure agile working is fully embedded across the Council so that staff can choose how, where and when to work;
  • Establish effective change management support to ensure the delivery of this Strategy benefits from strong, corporate leadership where the workforce is fully supported and engaged in the change;
  • Establish digital leadership and digital literacy as a core requirement for all Council jobs. Create and implement a Digital Skills Strategy.