iServer provides the foundation for an agile approach to Worcestershire County Council's digital transformation
Worcestershire County Council are a local authority, serving over 500,000 citizens across the picturesque county of Worcestershire. With big ambitions for the future, Worcestershire County Council are focused on building a world class, commercially-minded council, that will maximize the full potential of strategic commissioning. This will provide opportunities not only for businesses and social enterprises, but for the voluntary and community sectors as well.
With responsibilities across economic growth, public health, social care and transportation, as well as a track record of successfully implementing forward thinking projects, Worcestershire County Council are well on-track to achieving their potential. Their current ‘FutureFit’ strategy has already made great progress in aligning resident’s needs and expectations to council capabilities. Through the realization of these types of project, Worcestershire County Council are set to be successful in delivering their vision of a world class Worcestershire, with a prosperous economy and thriving community.
Despite running a multitude of successful improvement projects, in 2013 the Digital Centre of Innovation within Worcestershire County Council (responsible for enabling the council’s business requirements through technology) faced increasing challenges. Disparate sets of architecture and Business Process Management documents archived in SharePoint and local drives were impeding meaningful analysis, making it hard to pinpoint how technologies supported business needs. Current knowledge and best practices were not easy to visualize, and this contributed to less meaningful collaboration with the wider business. An overarching culture of Enterprise Architecture and the principle of reuse were not established. This meant that Worcestershire knowledge was kept in IT silos with no central store of key documentation leading to application resiliency issues as well as being less able to comply with statutory requirements.
The team needed a tool that would allow them to link the organization to their Systems and Customer Access team. The tool needed to be user-friendly, in terms of both implementation and subsequent use. As well as a low total cost of ownership, the value of investment in the tool needed to be quickly realized. A deciding factor and key requirement for the team was finding a tool with the capacity to visually communicate Enterprise Architecture and Business Process Management to the entire organization. Having assessed a number of tools based on these requirements, the Digital Centre of Innovation decided to implement iServer.
The team at Worcestershire County Council needed to enhance their strategies for IT collaboration, application portfolio effectiveness, impact analysis, and visualization of future transformation opportunities. They therefore needed a tool with a variety of capabilities and opted to install a number of iServer modules, including iServer Portal, Data Exchange, Reporting Services, as well as the TOGAF and APM accelerators. The team were drawn to iServer for its familiar foundation in Microsoft Office Products as well as its comprehensive e-Learning package which ensured the entire team would be confident and happy, utilizing the tool.
iServer has been able to improve business and IT collaboration by becoming the de facto repository for storing knowledge of all systems, processes, data and technology. This has contributed to a stable platform for an Enterprise Architecture and Business Process Modeling methodology which can be easily visualized and provide opportunities for re-use. The transparency provided by iServer Portal, combined with Reporting Services has allowed for impact analysis, lowering overall effort for change. Furthermore, reporting and visualization has allowed for the effective review of future vision and transformation opportunities.
Worcestershire County Council have benefited most noticeably from iServer Portal’s capacity for visualization and collaboration of Enterprise Architecture and Business Process Management with the wider business. The TOGAF templates provided by the TOGAF accelerator have also been continually utilized in the Council’s architecture efforts.
Due to the depth and breadth of modules and accelerators utilized by Worcestershire County Council, iServer has been able to benefit team members across a variety of roles. Data Intelligence specialists have been able to successfully design the Enterprise Architecture including business intelligence needs using a data warehouse. Business analysts have been able to take an agile approach to implementation and are better able to support Business Process Management. Finally iServer has benefitted the Digital Delivery team by supporting impact analysis for web content management and allowing Digital Designers to re-architect the Council’s citizen and business content.
Despite initial concerns of business acceptance for the Enterprise Architecture culture, the team quickly found that iServer was accepted and put to use meeting initial requirements and extending the capabilities of the Digital Centre of Innovation. iServer’s Enterprise Architecture Solution with the TOGAF accelerator has been incremental in the introduction of agile project management for the Worcestershire Information Network, allowing for the recording of user stories and the mapping of data entities. This solution is also supporting the process for commissioning of business processes such as Finance and Human Resources, allowing the team to map the system architecture underpinning business processes, giving potential partners the ability to review the Worcestershire County Council estate. The APM Accelerator has improved the consistency with which they evaluate, implement and support applications as well as how they integrate these applications with underlying technology.
iServer has also enhanced the customer experience of Worcestershire County Council, with iServer Portal providing the means to summarise the website in a visual way which allowed collaboration and review of the content. The Council’s website has had a radical reduction in content, from over eight thousand, to just eight hundred pages, providing a more user-friendly, concise experience. The Digital Centre of Innovation team are now designing our future business and system requirements to ensure 100% of our services are online which will positively transform the customer experience.
Worcestershire County Council is currently undergoing a digital transformation involving cloud, mobile, big data and delivering 100% of services online. This transformation includes implementing a successful and dynamic Enterprise Architecture. As they embark on this Enterprise Architecture journey, iServer will be the foundation for providing an agile approach to digital transformation, by allowing for the implementation of EA on a business project basis, therefore ensuring that immediate value is always delivered.
iServer is our foundation to becoming a world class Digital Council, by enabling agile design and visualization of our future business services, applications, data intelligence and technology requirements, making the implementation of our initiatives so much easier.
Leader: Digital Centre of Innovation
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