In a world of non-stop innovation, where it feels like there are apps to serve every purpose and new technologies are emerging onto the market at breakneck speeds, perhaps it’s time to take a step back and ask ourselves: how can we be sure that the technology we’re making is truly benefiting society and, just as importantly, can be accessed by everybody?
In the past, the primary focus of innovative tech was to either save or make money for an organisation. Thankfully, for many companies such as Capita, this has changed. I believe we’re genuinely at an intersection where businesses like ours have a duty to use technology to drive societal value. This change of vision has been one of the largest changes to the industry in the last decade and has only been accelerated by Covid-19. Throughout the pandemic we have seen that community organisations have been those which have delivered the best value and fastest, most personalised services to the citizens who have needed them most.
Moreover, reports we’ve collaborated on, such as The Social State by the think-tank Demos, have shown that businesses such as Capita could work collaboratively with those local communities to enhance services even further. Providing those communities with speedy access to the resources needed can make a huge change to public service delivery and will be a step in the right direction when it comes to prioritising delivering value to society.
We have an opportunity, right now, to be truly ambitious when it comes to having a national plan to fix the Digital Divide. We are working with The Good Things Foundation to help combined authorities, with their unique role and reach, to stop the digital divide widening and deepening. Together, we have launched a digital roadmap that provides practical ideas for those charged with developing digital inclusion strategies. It sets out the case for action by combined authorities in England, inspired by what’s been happening in the West Midlands and Greater Manchester, and builds on the actions of many hundreds of digital inclusion champions across the UK, in communities, local authorities, libraries, charities and corporations over many years.
As we head into the final quarter of the year, and continue to battle against the pandemic, it’s important that we remain aware of the most vulnerable in society and sustain the drive to find and create accessible new innovative solutions to support them.
To hear more about Capita’s research and how we are bringing the initiatives in this blog to life, please contact me at email@example.com. I would love to hear from you.
Rachael is the Business Development Director within Capita’s Local Public Service Team, working across a footprint of 250+ council customers. She is helping to understand the challenges they face and identify strategic solutions that bring to bear capabilities from across Capita and our supplier eco-system.