Government to miss March 2015 deadline for redesigned digital services

The government will miss its goal to redesign and rebuild 25 significant ‘exemplar’ services by March 2015.

The commitment to digitise the government’s top 25 highest-volume transactions prominently featured in the government digital strategy and has been reiterated in numerous official documents since.

However in its latest quarterly update the Government Digital Service (GDS) admitted it will miss the target.

The report, published yesterday, said: “At this stage, we anticipate that by the end of March 2015, 20 exemplar services will be being used by the public as live or public beta services.”

Of the five services to miss the deadline, GDS said it expects two to be publicly available “before the beginning of the next Parliament” in May 2015.

These are online applications for passports and the beleaguered Universal Credit project to reform the benefits system.

It said the final three exemplars “will be available for public use during the next Parliament” which is scheduled to finish in 2020.

Those three projects are for digitising the Land Registry’s 30 million transactions a year, allowing the two million ill or disabled people who receive Personal Independence Payments (PIP) to claim online, and providing an online tax dashboard for 120,000 tax agents.

The Land Registry exemplar was delayed by a public consultation on its future commercial model this spring, a GDS source told ComputerworldUK.

The PIP project was held up by reassessments of existing disability benefit claimants. The tax dashboard scheme was delayed due to issues over identity assurance but is expected to launch ‘early in the next parliament’, he explained.

In its quarterly update GDS said Whitehall departments are working on over 130 digital projects to transform services beyond the 25 exemplars.

A Cabinet Office spokesperson said: “This Government is revolutionising digital services in an unprecedented way and our 25 ‘exemplar’ services will make things simpler, clearer and faster for people to interact with government.

“Today, 14 are being used by the public and already up and running which means people are doing things like registering to vote and even viewing their driving licence details online.”

Copyright © 2014 IDG Communications, Inc.

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