Last Thursday we held what we think is a pretty unique event – an all-supplier networking day with all the companies that are helping us design the future of technology service delivery at the Council.
For the last couple of years, the Council has been working through a programme of changing the way we deliver core technology services, including things like the service desk, desktop support, networks and hosting, telephony, printing and so forth.
Ably supported by our transformation partners Rainmaker Solutions, this programme of work has seen a new operating model introduced for our core technology provision – moving from a single supplier of these services to a mixed model, where dedicated suppliers for individual components are used, alongside some in-house delivery.
Key to this new model is a collaborative approach, where the Digital Service and our delivery partners come together to find new ways to better meet the needs of our users. We really don’t want to get stuck in the rut common to client/supplier relationships where each blames the other for lack of progress. Instead, bringing the digital culture of openness, transparency and cooperation to our work in service operations should see greater levels of innovation and user satisfaction emerge.
So, the event last week was our opportunity to get everyone in a room for the first time, introducing folk to one another and starting to build the relationships necessary to make this new way of working work.
We heard from each of the managers within the Digital Service, outlining the role their teams play and what challenges they need the support from our new partners on. After this, we had a workshop session to identify the key themes and principles required for our “suppliers’ charter” – which sets the tone for our collaboration in the future.
The principles in the charter are:
- Users first
- Collective responsibility
We finished the day hearing from the new partners themselves, about how they are approaching the transition to becoming our suppliers, and what their visions for the future of their particular specialisms are.
All in all it was a great day, getting to meet the people we will be working with very closely in the future. Hopefully we might be able to encourage them to share their thoughts with us here on croydon.digital!
Dave Briggs is the Head of Digital Operations at Croydon Council. You can follow him on Twitter @davebriggs.