In April 2023, the UK Government unveiled its Wireless Infrastructure Strategy, highlighting the importance of digital connectivity for driving economic growth. While the strategy includes significant investments in 5G and fibre connectivity, we argue that local authorities and public bodies should not rely solely on government initiatives and that by creating smart connected place initiatives, public authorities can achieve whole-council digital transformation and better serve their stakeholders and achieve wider social and economic outcomes. Public authorities that have collaborated with Intelligens Consulting, a renowned expert in whole-council digital transformation, have unlocked their full economic and digital potential.
In April 2023 this year the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology and The Rt Hon Michelle Donelan MP announced a new Wireless Infrastructure Strategy to deliver upon Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s priority to grow the UK economy.
The Department’s plans to boost digital connectivity include an investment package worth almost GBP 150 million, with GBP 100 million to put the UK at the forefront of future research including 6G, and GBP 40 million to boost 5G take-up and GBP 8 million to connect rural homes with satellite connectivity. This is in addition to Project Gigabit’s GBP 5 billion to gigabit enable the UK by 2030.
Focusing on digital connectivity alone is not enough
While the Wireless Infrastructure Strategy and investments in 5G and fibre connectivity are significant, true impact and transformation come from proactive approaches taken by public authorities themselves. By embracing whole-council digital transformation and creating smarter connected places, public authorities can maximise the benefits for their communities.
Comprehensive and forward-thinking smart strategies will drive meaningful change and shape the future of digital innovation at a local level benefiting the people that live, work, learn, visit and invest in their areas.
It is therefore incumbent upon public authority leaders such as the C-suite, heads of place, the economy and services to prioritise smart connected place and whole-council digital transformation strategies as a crucial step to securing future economic growth and levelling up with the rest of the UK.
Whole-council digital transformation and smart connected places can optimise resources and drive efficiency
There are many benefits of developing smart connected places to public authorities from enhancing end-user services, improving corporate outcomes and creating social and economic impact as shown in Figure 1 below.
Figure 1 – Improved outcomes because of smart connected places and whole-council digital transformation. Source: Intelligens Consulting, June 2023.
Smart connected places can enhance end-user service delivery to citizens and businesses such as improved transportation, health and social care, education, waste management, public safety, energy management, tourism and cultural heritage etc.
These examples represent just a fraction of the services that can be enhanced through whole-council digital transformation and smart connected places. By leveraging technology and data-driven approaches, public authorities can improve the quality of services, optimise resource allocation, and create a better quality of life for their residents and businesses.
Smart connected places also offer public authorities with valuable insights to deliver improved corporate outcomes, such as reduced operating costs, increase incomes and revenue streams and enhanced workforce productivity; particularly important in times when public authorities face financial constraints, whole-council digital transformation and smart connected places can optimise resources and drive efficiency.
By creating smart connected places through whole-council digital transformation, public authorities can also create social and economic impact resulting in inward investment, while driving their region towards a sustainable, Net Zero future meeting ESG targets resulting in significant social impact.
Public authority leaders should embrace whole-council digital transformation to secure their place in the digital economy
To secure their place in the digital economy and enhance the well-being of their people, public authority leaders, policymakers, and decision-makers must prioritise the development of a comprehensive smart connected place strategy. This requires attracting private investment in future-proof digital infrastructure while minimising reliance on public subsidies.
A research study undertaken by Intelligens Consulting revealed that current approaches taken by public authorities to invest smart places is uncoordinated, leading to a patchwork of initiatives that underplay the full potential of benefits that can be achieved.
Public authorities in the UK that have partnered with Intelligens Consulting to deliver whole-council digital transformation have experienced remarkable results. By unlocking multimillion-pound private investments in digital infrastructure, these authorities have generated billions of pounds in economic returns as well as delivering ICT efficiency and creating social impact.
These success stories demonstrate the immense impact of proactive digital initiatives guided by expert advice.
Our comprehensive five-stage strategy, assesses the local digital landscape, sets ambitious goals, explores innovative solutions, creates actionable plans, and successfully implements digital transformation initiatives. This approach maximises the potential for attracting private investment, improving service delivery, and driving economic growth in the region.
Embrace whole council digital transformation today
Whole council digital transformation is a crucial step for public authorities to deliver efficiency savings, drive economic growth and enhance the delivery of frontline services.
By embracing digital transformation public authorities can unlock the potential of smart connected places, attract private investment, and achieve whole-council digital transformation driving economic growth, contributing to social well-being benefits all members of society creating a positive impact on the lives of their citizens.
About Intelligens Consulting
Intelligens Consulting is a telecoms, smart city and digital transformation management consultant to investors, operators and public bodies. Intelligens Consulting offers expertise in whole-council digital transformation and can craft a tailored strategy aligned with the needs of service leads, stakeholders, and customers. With a proven track record in developing smart connected place strategies and attracting private investment, Intelligens Consulting empowers public authorities to transform their digital landscape. Please contact us on info@IntelligensConsulting.com should you wish to discuss anything discussed in this article.
You can download and share a PDF of the article below.