Award for Leadership
Home Office, Smarter Working Programme
The Home Office’s Smarter Working Programme (SWP) led the design of a groundbreaking new office building in Manchester. The building design enabled smarter working by offering staff flexibility in their working arrangements and equipping them with modern technology.
The Manchester project is now an exemplar of how senior sponsors, managers and staff have worked closely together to embrace change. Staff surveys have measured increased staff satisfaction, motivation and engagement, and business areas continue to promote smarter working to attract new talent and retain its experienced staff. The SWP established a network of skilled smarter working champions to drive cultural change across the business and offer support at team level. As a result, better collaborative working between HO business areas, suppliers and customers is helping the HO achieve better outcomes.
Department for Transport
DfT is committed to creating responsive and flexible working practices for people at all levels in their organisation that enable them to be the best they can be, and continue to attract talented individuals. The DfT leadership plays an essential role in the smart working culture of the department by modelling smart working for the whole organisation.
The TW3 board comprises senior leaders from the business areas that can best affect flexible working, and oversees the department’s smart working strategy. The DfT leadership have used blogs, webchats and face-to-face presentations to embed smart working as a default working practice and they lead by example. Their SCS1 and SCS2 have been instrumental in facilitating a culture shift away from presenteeism and 9-to-5 working patterns. Senior Civil Servants’ different working styles are communicated widely through DfT communications channels. Some 600 managers have taken part in sessions through DfT’s cohort programmes (Velocity and Momentum) focused on understanding the cultural barriers to flexible working and challenging their conscious and unconscious biases.
The Food Standards Agency, OWOW Programme
The Food Standards Agency created the Our Ways of Working (OWOW) Programme in order to implement smart working across the agency. OWOW began by identifying eight things that are needed for people to excel at work: for instance flexible working, objectives linked to corporate strategy, and accessible managers. Those eight themes then formed the basis of their #giveitago pilot from Dec 2015-March 2016, in which managers supported their teams to try out smarter ways of working.
The OWOW programme has developed more productive ways of working and has provided the tools and management support that smarter working requires. One of the biggest drivers behind participation was the encouragement and support of their CEO, Catherine Brown, who championed this initiative, and the senior managers who were prepared to let their teams experiment.
Award for Workspace
Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, Smart Working Team
DSTL won the first ever TW3 Leadership award and this nomination follows on from that pilot. Implementation began in Summer 2016, and aligned with a SW enabling change project—Future Telephony. It was delivered to time and budget. The project has helped Dstl run more efficiently, use their office space more effectively through the space concept of the 5Cs (Connect, Concentrate, Collaborate, Create, Contain), and also ensured that their people, customers and suppliers are able to work how and where they need to.
The Smart Working project looked at both the office environment and Our Ways of Working to enable staff to work in a range of spaces and locations. The design took the office potential capacity from 1000 to over 1500, and there is no differentiation between space allocations to each occupying team. An office etiquette was developed on our social media platform and is supported by signage that outlines the etiquette and use of each space.
The implementation of SW means that Dstl’s mobile workforce can regularly work off site with access to online information, reducing their environmental impact. The workspace meets the needs or a greater proportion of staff and less specialised equipment is needed. Staff feel that they have a better work-life balance because they are trusted to carry out their job effectively, their work is assessed on output rather than presence.
HMRC, Estates Transformation
HM Revenue and Customs is delivering one of the largest transformation programmes in Government. Their Locations Programme will replace 160 offices with 13 Regional Centres, four specialist sites and a smaller HQ in Whitehall by 2021. When complete, HMRC will be operating at 6m2 per full-time equivalent and saving £100m per annum in running costs. Ahead of the first Regional Centre’s opening, HMRC are bringing their workspace vision to life with four showcase working environments. They have introduced new workspace types, furniture and technology, and have tested their effectiveness to inform their planning of the Regional Centres.
Their showcases have differed from traditional office space in many ways. Staff no longer have one desk each, but new technology—laptops, AV screens and smart boards—allows for more flexible desk space. Workstations are height-adjustable and storage has been reduced by up to 70%
Award for Technology
Infrastructure and Projects Authority, Project Delivery Profession Team
Early in 2016, the Project Delivery Profession Team investigated options for a single digital tool to support collaboration among the 10,000 project delivery professionals across central government. The research indicated the need for a tool that builds relationships across organisational boundaries and allows people to share experience to solve problems. The team engaged Knowledge Hub and together they produced the Government Project Delivery Community (GovPDC).
The team structured this social network around the departmental user needs. It consists of a collection of self-managed groups that offer digital tools to support collaboration. The groups offer forums, document libraries, wiki pages, polls, event promotion, and a people search.
Health Family Capability Working Group
Health Education England created the Health Project Delivery Community which launched on 1st November 2016. It is aimed at staff who are involved in project management and delivery. The community seeks to bridge the gap following the criticism of organisational silos by Tony Meggs, the Chief Exec of the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, who called silos a ‘valley of death’ in health policy and implementation.
Each participating organisation has its own collaborative area within the site and access to 15 shared interest groups in specific areas. The community enables programme and project managers to share skills, knowledge and resources, and the collaborating organisations to pool resources, tools, skills and experience. The community provides stability for ongoing project delivery for the whole where individual parts may be going through organisational change. Less than two months after launch the Community had 677 members.
Award for Culture and People
Department for Transport
The Department for Transport (DfT) recognises the business benefits of smart working and has an ambition to be a smart working leader in the Civil Service. It has launched a focused project to improve smart working, which is owned by senior leaders and is lived by managers and staff throughout the organisation. The programme is overseen by a TW3 Board that comprises colleagues from across the business.
The smart working project has included refreshing policies and guidance, publishing blogs from staff across the business, and embedding smart working in training and induction. It made smart working part of the DfT brand in order to attract and retain talented employees. All of the department’s work is underpinned by a coherent internal communications package, delivered by people throughout DfT to highlight user stories. This is found on the internet and on blogs, such as a director general’s blog about working flexibly between Ottawa and London.
Food Standards Agency, OWOW Programme
The Food Standard Agency’s Our Ways of Working (OWOW) programme was established to implement smart working: to create an environment in which people are highly capable, effectively supported and engaged with their mission. The programme began by asking staff across the organisation to identify what was needed to help people excel. Out of this came eight themes which they used to create the #giveitago pilot from Dec 2015-March 2016.
Throughout the programme and particularly during the #giveitago phase the FSA have engaged staff through consultations, case studies, rich media content and campaigns on internal channels. They set up an OWOW hub page on their intranet with guidance, resources and case studies on how teams could work smarter during #giveitago.
Award for One Public Estate
Bristol City Council
Bristol City Council embarked on their Bristol Workplace Programme (BWP) in July 2013. They recognised that they would not achieve their Service Redesign objectives without changing how, where and when they worked, and without embracing investment in new technologies. In order to address this, the Bristol Workplace Programme looked at all place, people, platforms and technology investments, which impacted 4,000 staff.
The council is on track to rationalise their office estate from 38 buildings to 2 and space per person has reduced from 15sqm to 5sqm. The council engaged workplace designers to overcome restrictions on the grade 2* listed City Hall: now 70% of space is designed to support innovation, collaboration and integration and only 30% includes shared desks. The capacity of this building has increased by 300%. The council has transitioned many of its services to a digital platform, which improves citizen service delivery and reduces overhead costs. Staff now regard themselves as consumers of corporately owned space, assets and facilities. HR policies have been completely restructured to enable Agile thinking and working.
With City Hall once regarded as an outdated and inflexible workplace, and impenetrable to many citizens of Bristol, the reduced estate is now an effective, elegant, and modern expression of the council and its partners’ commitment to serve the City of Bristol.
Wiltshire Council spends £900m each year to provide 354 services to the people of Wiltshire. Since becoming a unitary authority in 2009, it has taken an innovative approach to the way it delivers services to residents and how its workforce is managed. Delivering services efficiently and effectively is at the heart of everything the council does. It has made giant strides in transforming and improving ways of working, making it possible to work effectively and keeping costs down to ensure money goes where it really matters – on frontline services.
The council has reduced its property portfolio from 95 buildings down to three main hubs. Doing this with a staff of more than 5,000 has been made possible by harnessing new technology into the workplace. A flexible desking policy and shared IT networks mean that people can work at any hub with ease.
Judges’ Special Award
North Yorkshire County Council
This year the judges also want to present a special Judges’ Award. This goes to a nominee from a local authority that showed excellence in Technology: North Yorkshire County Council, Modern Council Programme Team. The judges felt that a special award would acknowledge the council’s excellent IT facilities, which were way ahead of the other local government nominations.
Against a backdrop of austerity, North Yorkshire County Council designed a programme to use leading technology to improve the efficiency of their services. Their Modern Council programme used a business change to effect a cultural change in the team. Staff have been involved in developing the solutions
Key initiatives included: state of the art self-service systems for staff; mobile technology; Wi-Fi in all buildings; new software that allowed collaborative working and virtual meetings; and training for staff to support these new technologies. Managers, too, were empowered by online management processes and interactive dashboards with automated systems.
Their strong internal IT services and robust project management transformed their working style to better meet customer needs.
Their intelligent use of technology has protected and enhanced frontline services, improved user experience, and supported their staff. The rate of sick leave has been reduced to 6.21 absent days per employee. Their annual staff survey showed a 4% improvement in staff feeling encouraged to think innovatively. There has been over £1m saved in the last year on stationary and related consumables, and £200,000 saved on venue costs. These savings in time, cost, and travel show how the new technologies implemented by the Modern Council Programme Team have really contributed to the improvement and modernisation of the Council.