Digital tools and solutions enable councils to improve service design and delivery, to better meet the needs of their residents and improve productivity.

Technology is changing our world at a speed we have never seen before… That is a challenge, but… it is also a source of tremendous opportunity. If we seize them, if we own them, we can harness the power of these technologies to address the other great challenges we face.  

Martha Lane Fox, 2017

As councils face the twin challenges of decreasing funding and increasing demand, they have to find new ways of using technology to deliver services more effectively and enable their staff and members to work in new ways, increasing productivity and reducing costs.

Councils are aware of the potential of digital and are already exploiting it, to enable their residents, businesses, to self-serve and enable staff and members to operate more effectively while out of the office and as a result help reduce the council’s own operational costs.

A significant proportion of the top transactions are already online, and the volume of online activity is increasing despite the challenges that councils and communities face, including poor access to reliable broadband and Wi-Fi and having residents and businesses who do not have the skills or confidence to go online.

The sector recognises that to increase levels of online take-up, councils need to deliver a better online experience that works for their customers across a range of devices, both to meet customers’ expectations about transacting digitally and also to improve services and save money.

The LGA works with councils to ensure local government has a strong, credible voice on issues that impact the sector, as well as on national programmes of transformation. This includes digital infrastructure and connectivity which is vital to allow councils and communities to realise the full benefits of digitalisation. 

The LGA directly supports the work of councils on their digital transformation journeys. The LGA has set up and managed four programmes throughout the period 2014-2018 which provided 100 councils with funding and support to use digital tools and solutions to redesign and improve access to council services. These programmes have saved in excess of £4.5 million so far, they were Digital Experts, Digital Transformation, Digital Channel Shift and Digital Housing. The LGA works with each project to capture its learning. Case studies have been published for projects that have gone live and we continue to work with the remaining projects to capture their benefits.