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Cloud technology and the future of government

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Image of Radhaprem Ramaraj

As deputy director of cloud transformation at Government Shared Services, I help government corporate services, such as HR and finance to move to the cloud.

Away from our places of work we are used to using our mobile phones for banking, booking hotels, accessing public services and catching up with friends and family. Yet at work we are still often attached to traditional ways of processing services. We use paper, email and service requests. It is my role to help departments across government to modernise these services.

I support government departments to work more flexibly, making the lives of civil servants easier, and more rewarding by introducing new technology. This allows them to spend more time on their core work.

Importantly, this will reduce costs across government and help prepare the Civil Service for future technological changes, of which moving to the cloud is one aspect.

Graphic of a building,the WIFI logo, and clouds representing cloud technology

I joined Government Shared Services in June 2018. Already, I have been working with the Home Office, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, HMRC, Department for Transport and others on their plans to move to the cloud.

Before I joined Government Shared Services, I have worked across private, public and hybrid cloud technology. My experience includes introducing cloud technology to IT infrastructure, and working as a liaison between the technology and service delivery teams during technology changes.

Technology and cultural change

The value of cultural and organisational change when moving services to the cloud cannot be underestimated. To ensure the return on the investment in change is fully realised, it is important that change is communicated effectively. Changing technology has a big effect on those across government.

The majority of employees within ministerial departments are impacted by our work in Government Shared Services.

The technical implementation process is also important; as some government department’s deal with huge numbers of employees and records. For instance, the Department of Work and Pensions has over 80,000 staff. This means it is vital that I and those I work alongside, ensure the process of moving data is managed correctly.

Individual needs

Transferring services to the cloud can help departments ensure that they have the functionality they need to enable them to improve efficiency. This is not a one-size-fits-all process, as different departments have specific individual needs.

For example – some have a large overseas requirement, such as the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, which manages payments to staff in many different currencies. Much of my work involves speaking to departments, understanding their needs, and how this might impact their cloud transformation.

My role is forward looking, and supports Government Shared Services emphasis on technology and transformation. I really enjoy working across government departments, saving money for taxpayers and modernising and improving services for nearly half a million civil servants who use these services.

I am particularly excited about how technology can improve the work of government, and how I can shape this in the future.

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