At the Digital Office For Scottish Local Government (which serves 30 of the country's 32 local councils), Chief Digital Officer Martyn Wallace initiated a whopping 53 projects under 18 key programmes of work in 2017. The programmes fall into the organisation's three main pillars of digital leadership (skills, culture and innovation), digital foundations (platforms, tech and better use of data) and digital services (service redesign using the components created in leadership and foundations).
One of the key projects has seen Wallace conduct a series of digital maturity assessments with the Digital Office's council partners to help identify gaps in their own programmes and identify new challenges to collaborate on. In beta during 2017, the project will go live in early 2018, publishing a range of tools for councils to conduct their own assessment each year to benchmark their performance.
The past 12 months have seen him introduce agile, scrum and other new ways of working into councils where Prince 2 has traditionally ruled the development roost. Wallace has largely overcome a failure-allergic culture by stressing the positives of failing fast with only some budget committed, rather than the traditional long-tail delivery where failure is identified late and expensively.
Another innovation has been IoT-based telecare that looks to offer older people a better quality of life outside the home as well as traditional support inside. There is also potential for pooling the data collected to help with predictive interventions in areas such as fall prevention. Augmented reality is also coming into focus for a project for planning consent for residential, commercial and infrastructure building.