Growing expectations that public-sector organizations need to be more accountable to stakeholders and deliver better public services have left governments struggling to provide more citizen-focused services with less funding.
We’re asking whether Shared Services can make the difference they need.
The UK government clearly thinks so, with Central and Local government changing the way they work… Xentrall Shared Services- a partnership between Darlington and Stockton Councils – is a strong advocate of the benefits– they believe it demonstrates innovation, both technological, and economic- making it perfect to meet the new fiscal challenges.
But, with Oracle announcing this week that they have signed a deal which will purportedly save the taxpayer 75 million pounds – offering more shared service savings by reducing the government’s requirement for software upgrades, we have to ask whether this will really save in the long run? Or whether this is just another cost saving scheme that fails to meet demands.
The cost of change can be high, and the government must realise that software implementation amounts to more than just the initial licence cost.
Some interesting pointers for those considering making the change:
- Shared services projects should receive no additional start-up funding and should be required in the first year to deliver savings compared to the previous arrangements.
- If subsequent investment in IT is needed, it should come from money already saved.
- Implementation should be quick
- Running costs should be low without the need for expensive external consultants
- There should be post-implementation agility; users should be able to modify their systems rapidly and without huge expense when their changing circumstances demand it
Take a look at our paper on Planning and Implementing Shared Services for more information