Break down silos to create a data driven culture in government and public administration | Unit4
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ball and broken chain

Break down silos to create a data driven culture in government and public administration

from  March 8, 2022 | 4 min read

The public sector has a lot of challenges to face these days. But one of the biggest takes the form of the burden of administration. Not only is there more of it than ever before – as population demographics change and demands on services become greater – but the proliferation of different technologies in different departments at different periods has made it more difficult to manage.

Siloed by default and by design

Over the last 50 years, your organization has probably accrued an overwhelming number of different computer and software systems. Each of these will have been brought in to perform a specific function, and in doing so, solve a specific problem. This means that these systems are siloed by default, and also partly by design. They were created and incorporated to fulfil the needs of specific departments and working groups, who probably never foresaw any need for the data they collected to be shared with any other systems.

However, as the public sector comes under ever more pressure to increase accountability and transparency, boost efficiency, and make better use of data, these systems are rapidly showing they are unfit for purpose.

The value of data locked in front office legacy systems should be obvious. But beyond these, the tools used by finance and HR departments – whether in the realms of day today money and people management or talent management and data analysis – contain a wealth of data which could potentially be used to boost efficiency and productivity and make your organization’s operations a good deal more transparent.

Helping government organizations to break down silos

With very specific ways of working and heightened security needs around citizen data and sensitive information, government has been particularly slow to approach the challenge of integrating systems across departments. To say nothing of really tackling the question of data storage and analysis in a robust, modern sense.

But in spite of this, as the preferred ERP partner of government organizations in multiple countries, we’re beginning to see a real tide of change. Along with some real pockets of excellence across the sector. We’re very proud to say that many of them come from our own customers – particularly in the area of shared services. To name a few:

Hoople

Hoople is a private company that provides shared business support services to the public sector. They’ve been using Unit4 ERP since their foundation in 2011 to support businesses processes for over 4000 people in their own teams, and across their partner organization at Hertfordshire County Council, and other external customers including Rutland County Council and Halo Leisure. Their solution allows them to improve efficiency in their own finance, procurement, HR, and payroll services – and to provide services to their customers and shareholder organizations.

Southampton City Council

Southampton City Council is the unitary authority for Southampton on the South coast of England, comprising approximately 254,000 residents. The council operates more than 400 services. Citizens regularly cross between them, from housing, to leisure, to social, to other services. Until recently, much of the data underpinning these services was locked in separate, fragmented silos, undermining the opportunity to deliver joined-up, value-based service. By standardizing their services onto a single, connected instance of Unit4 ERP in the cloud, Southampton have been able to redirect £200,000 to service delivery and make total procurement savings of £250,000.

East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust provides around-the-clock accident and emergency services across an area of 7,500 square miles, inhabited by 6.2 million people. They receive more than one million emergency calls every year.

Using Unit4 FP&A, the Trust has been able to make fast, accurate planning decisions that help drive improved services and increased efficiency. They rolled out their solution in just 6 weeks, and have managed to make their financial planning processes 33% faster by eliminating reliance on manual processing and data collation and reducing spreadsheet dependency.

ERPx makes silos a thing of the past

Our next-generation solution ERPx has been designed from the ground up to eliminate siloed operational models in people-centric sectors like government and public administration. Our cloud-native architecture allows your organization to safely and securely store and process all your data across every department, and our microservices delivery model and no-code customization features make it possible for everyone who uses the system to create the tools and features they need to satisfy their particular workloads and requirements – all within a single solution.