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​At BetterGov we place people at the heart of what we do. Focusing on collaboration, sustainability and knowledge transfer, we have successfully supported our clients on their Digital Transformation journey, from discovery through to live and post go-live support.

As Public Sector specialists we understand that no two Public Sector organisations are the same, and the type of delivery support required can vary greatly. By listening to our clients over the years, we were able to refine our services to provide maximum value, without compromising the quality of support and expertise provided.

Partnering with BetterGov, our clients have swift access to GDS experienced specialists across Digital, Data, Technology, Process and Change whilst offering flexibility, scalability and cost savings through the following engagement options:​

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Specialist Interim Support

BetterGov is proud to be an independent business that has grown organically over the years and have attracted senior staff with sector-specific expertise. On average, our staff members have over a decade of experience within the recruitment and consulting industry, and have developed robust networks of specialists. This enables us to offer expertise on a time and materials basis to our clients who require only ad hoc, interim support.

Delivery of Outcomes

Utilising our in-house capabilities and expertise, BetterGov is uniquely positioned to assume the risk and responsibility of successful delivery of fixed priced outcomes. Through full life-cycle project/programme management and delivery of 'phases' or 'work packages' we are able to offer our clients various commercial and delivery options, ensuring true value for money.​

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Blended Multidisciplinary Teams

Collaboration is business as usual for BetterGov and working as part of a blended delivery team is welcomed. We are able to provide our own team of multidiscipline staff (i.e. Scrum teams) or we can supplement the 3rd party capability - external suppliers and civil servants alike. BetterGov actively promotes knowledge sharing to ensure sustainable benefit realisation after handover.

Internal Capability Development

Partnering with our clients, we are able to create and implement a strategy to increase internal capability through a number of development routes. We help overcome the challenge of identifying skill gaps and creating succession planning, whilst incorporating a focus on our clients' culture and diversity and inclusion ambitions. The result is less reliance on expensive external suppliers, as well as increased employee engagement and fostering a culture of continuous learning and improvement.

Explore our work...

BetterGov is proud to have successfully supported key transformational programmes across Public Sector, delivering sustainable outcomes and creating true value through internal capability development.

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Digital Social Work - Modernisation & Innovation

​Read our full report here.​The government has now set out plans to allocate over £1bn in funding for social care reform over the next three years following the release of its new national social care strategy. Local government and care sector leaders welcomed the document's ambitions, and there is a commitment to invest around £150 million in new technology solutions, which includes technology enabled care, and support for service provider organisations. However, one of the recurring problems the Local Authority social care sector faces is about knowing how much to invest in digital solutions for strategic and successful change alongside identifying accurately, what it currently spends to determine how it can achieve more value from this. Common expectations across the government agencies that impact or influence social care include: That in this technological age, there ought to be a greater level of digital solutions to support citizen engagement in public services. Having a public sector workforce that is digitally enabled to plan and deliver these services. That the commercial technology providers that support public service, design and develop good quality system solutions at reasonable prices to achieve both aims. In terms of social care organisations, given the well-publicised perilous state of funding, an existing shortfall in skilled resources and the substantial increase in service demands, it is unclear as to how LA’s are meant to achieve these things, what they might cost, and how they might be paid for. Solving these problems for clients is ‘work-in-progress’ at BetterGov, and to encourage debate and dialogue on these topics it has now published a new report on the challenges on meeting this ‘knowledge gap’ and welcomes ideas and comments to help increase modernisation and innovation through digital solutions. ​Read our full report here.​

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Need help planning for Financial Assessment Uplift this year?

​Local authorities are required to conduct a financial assessment for the majority of social care clients in receipt of chargeable services. This can amount to thousands of assessments and because pensions and other benefits are increased annually these should be maintained with current benefit rates and other increases to ensure correct charging. Manually updating financial assessments annually is a task requiring significant time and effort. Even for two or three thousand assessments this is simply not possible to complete for updated charges to be in place in line with the date of pension and benefit increases in early April each year.​Fortunately, there is another way! The leading Social Care and Finance system all have built in functionality to automatically uplift financial assessments. This is often referred to as the “Financial Assessment Bulk Uplift” or “FABU” process. Financial assessment data is recorded on forms that capture information needed for the financial assessment e.g. client income, benefits, capital and expenses. The form calculates an “Ability to Pay” and where appropriate this is used as the basis for client charging.​The uplift process takes the data on all existing forms and create a new form for each client that contains the new financial or benefit year pension and other appropriate increases. A new “Ability to Pay” is calculated that applies from any chosen date though this is usually the start of the benefit year. Once setup and tested it is possible to process all eligible existing financial assessments in a matter of a few hours saving significant time and effort for local authority financial assessment teams and ensuring that local authority revenue is maximised on time and from the start of the financial year.​As with any process care must be taken to ensure that the correct updates are produced and of course don’t forget the mail merge which is required to notify Citizen of the changes. It is important to ensure that the uplift is set up correctly and to test thoroughly prior to implementation.​BetterGov has supported several local authorities over a number of years in both the initial implementation of uplifts and ongoing running. We also frequently transition the expertise to in-house staff undertaking the exercise. We have built up structure alongside a tried and tested structured approach. Some of the services we provide in this regard include:​A. Updating rates, testing and running the process end to endB. Troubleshooting issues and finding solutionsC. Assisting with complex mail merges for – one of the councils we support had over 15,000 financial assessment uplifts and corresponding letters which needed to be sent outD. Development of applications to validate uplift resultE. Upskilling and ‘handholding’ of internal staffF. Lastly a friendly ‘sounding board’ for our customers​There have been many challenges and hurdles to overcome, the feedback we have got from our customers has always been warm and positive. If you do need help with the 2022 uplift do get in contact.

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Developing Internal Capabilities

​​An Executive Agency (EA) of the UK government based in Wales and on the South and East Coast of England was going through a large Digital Transformation programme where they were building out their own capabilities in order to manage the reorganisation and move back in-house from a largely outsourced service. This saw the introduction of several different new services including, 24/7 IT Service Desk, Technical Architecture and Service Design, Delivery Management, PMO and a new Data team. In order to manage these services internally, the EA needed to increase internal capability, however they struggled with recruiting permanent staff as a result of their locations, below-market salaries and losing potential candidates as a result of their cumbersome and disjointed recruitment process.Working with the ICT and Digital department, supported by Human Resources, we identified the challenges faced by the EA. Salaries offered proved to be challenging, as well as finding local talent (within commutable distance to the offices) with the desired skill sets (i.e. Technical Architect). A further challenge we faced was the resourcing and onboarding process which often involved 2 stages and a panel of interviewers, resulting in limited availability of internal staff for interviews and for providing feedback.In order to overcome the identified challenges, our focus was to engage with candidates who were within commuting distance of the HQ and wanted to enjoy the lifestyle balance offered as opposed to commuting to London. Therefore, the extra time and flexible working pattern was the payoff for the reduced salary in comparison to the remuneration offered by London based departments. Coupled with the offer of being a part of a growing function that provided learning opportunities and potential for progress/promotion helped overcome the salary challenge. Our analytical software proved to be valuable in mapping specific skill sets within the local labour market and giving us insight into which local companies we were competing with in regard to talent attraction, and which candidates were commuting to London for work. Through continuous improvement meetings with the key stakeholders, we managed to reduce the time to hire and onboarding process by 30% and achieved a fill ratio of 90% of all resourcing requirements within the agreed phased delivery (i.e. 3 months for phase 1 and 3 months for phase 2).​Specialist skill sets successfully resourced: Technical Architects, Network Architect, Delivery Managers, Service Desk Analyst, Service Desk Team Lead, Service Transition Managers, Service Design Leads

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Sheer determination leading to innovation – Liquidlogic LAS / ContrOCC Implementation

How do you deliver a social care case management system implementation in the height of a pandemic? How do you keep the project plan on track and in budget without sacrificing quality when almost the entire organisation is working remotely and the project team have limited access to staff from the business?Solution:Firstly, you need extensive experience in social care delivery. Secondly, you need an ability to work creatively and to innovate. Finally you need hard work and sheer determination to find a way past all the obstacles put in your path on a daily basis.Supporting the implementation of a new adult social care case management system, Liquidlogic LAS / ContrOCC , covering every single aspect of the directorate’s social care and financial recording, including multiple interfaces and portals in a single, ‘big bang’ Go Live was always going to be a challenge.The BetterGov project team had to figure out a way to continue to undertake data migration testing and configuration design and testing for the final two rounds of UAT, plus complete dry run testing and go live itself with minimal input from the business.Then there was the small matter of 700 staff to train on the new system and support through Go Live and Early Life…Our solution? Harness available technologies to come up with creative alternatives. To start with, we established fairly quickly in the Configuration and Testing Workstreams that staff worked best when using MS Teams in small groups and in shorter sessions. We were able to focus work with a small group of specialist staff, working around their availability and in short development sprints.Training was modelled on the same approach. Short bursts designed in way to give staff maximum opportunity to learn. Where before, staff would have been asked to attend traditional all day classroom training in groups of 6 to 10 people, we put together a huge programme of specialist short interactive, hands-on training courses via MS Teams. Close to a 1,000 training events were delivered in 1.5 or 2 hour long bitesize sessions comprising of a maximum of 3 delegates and a specialist LAS trainer. This approach gave us a wide-ranging programme of specialist courses for each different part of the business. On top of this, we offered an e-learning package to cover the basics of navigation and generic case recording, which staff were able to undertake in their own time as often as they required prior to and after go live.We delivered the entire training programme in a training window which spanned just over 3 weeks, wrapped around Go Live, maximising the likelihood of staff remembering and consolidating their learning.However, it was Early Life Support for the new systems which provided the greatest challenge.Prior to the pandemic, staff would have been sat next to each other in an office, offering support and help to their colleagues who struggle with a new system. Nominated ‘Super Users’ and staff who just ‘GET IT’ would have provided invaluable support for more gentle system users and, normally, after a period of a few weeks or months, the system would bed in and become second nature.So how could we replicate that type of support structure? We barely had any super users as the business was so stretched it was difficult even to recruit and train them. Those staff who had been helping in design and testing were suddenly unavailable, back to the ‘day job’ as the organisation understandably diverted all efforts to frontline activities. We found ourselves with hardly any super users and 90% of staff ‘home alone’ without colleagues on hand to answer their queries.Our solution was to try and replicate support using different technologies, all of which are widely available to most public sector bodies without additional procurement:We set up dedicated MS Teams sessions for key service areas – some all-day drop-in sessions where staff could join at any point, some as part of team meetings where we had a captive audienceWe used the Office 365 Booking App to allow staff to book dedicated 15 or 30 minute slots with a project team memberWe created a series of online videos using MS Stream within MS Teams and uploaded them to organisations intranet alongside traditional written guides and a FAQFinally we provide a dedicated Helpdesk which would manage queries logged on the Council’s IT Tech Support Portal or through a dedicated mailboxWe also provided targeted 1-2-1 support to users with assistive technology, senior managers and staff identified as needing dedicated support throughout the training programme and during Go LiveIt’s fair to say it’s been a hugely successful outcome; these new ways of working have not only improved the quality of work and associated outcomes they have also created visibility and ‘levers’ to quickly redeploy capacity as required.

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Flexible Resourcing Delivery Partner

A large London Council recruited resources through a managed vendor arrangement with their incumbent supplier. Although the arrangement serviced the more administrative and clerical positions well, The Corporate Services and Digital and Change teams increasingly struggled to recruit specialist interim resource with the appropriate skill sets and within a timely manner.In addition to the resourcing issues faced by the departments, the Council were also at risk of losing business-critical resource due to the challenges presented by the application of the intermediaries legislation (IR35). The challenges presented by both the intermediaries’ legislation and the current cumbersome and not fit-for-purpose resource service, meant that the Council needed to identify an alternative, more flexible solution to engage specialist resource outside of their current managed vendor.Before the teams could engage with an alternative service provider, the Councils Senior Leadership Team required a business case to be presented. As a result, the Department Director sat down with the BetterGov team in a whiteboard meeting in order to analyse the Authority’s needs and jointly create a robust business case, showcasing benefits and risks.The service proposal created was included in the business case, which consisted of details outlining the IR35 friendly engagement model through the use of a blended service model service (outcome-based) contracts via an OJEU approved Crown Commercial Services framework, including resourcing support for fixed-term roles. The proposal allowed the Council to procure services through an approved framework, under an overarching agreement with flexible resource utilisation and swift access to the specialist staff.The business case was approved and shortly after and the London Council now had a trusted Delivery Partner providing a flexible and scalable solution, enabling rapid access to specialist resources through the newly created engagement model, built around the specific needs of the Corporate Services and Digital and Change teams.​

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Discovery Audit and Procurement Support

London Borough of Croydon (LBC) needed to better understand their current landscape of service needs, organisation strategy and implementation delivery structure prior to procuring a new Adult’s Social Care System. Having successfully delivered System Implementation Audits for Social Care Systems in a number of Local Authorities nationwide, BetterGov were appointed by Croydon as a trusted partner to deliver a detailed discovery analysis, including a comprehensive migration assessment and provide recommendations.LBC was forced to consider a replacement for their incumbent Adult’s social care system (SWIFT / AIS) as the software vendor (Northgate Public Services) made the decision to exit the social care systems market and gave notice to all their clients. As a result of limited in-house capabilities, the Borough sought specialist guidance to provide a detailed analysis and recommendations in order to successfully select and implement a new case management system. Upon initial investigation, BetterGov identified that migration from the legacy case management system would incorporate the data migration of two additional systems, NHS CRS and Information@Work, which were also to be included in the discovery audit in order to guide both the procurement and implementation process. Working with key service area stakeholders and system users, coupled with BetterGov’s intrinsic knowledge of case management systems, we were able to provide Croydon with business-critical information to ensure both effective procurement and also successful implementation of a new Social Care System. Due to the high level of detail and quality of the diagnostic audit, the LBC were able to go out to a competitive tender with a full specification of requirements needed to appoint a fit-for-purpose and best value for money case management system. Equally essential, BetterGov’s analysis report highlighted the Councils technical skills gap and also detailed recommendations on system integration options, associated implementation costs, business requirements, timeframes, and delivery and governance structure of the migration and integration process.As a result of commissioning BetterGov’s Discovery Audit and Procurement support services, the LBC had assurances that key decisions made for both procurement and implementation delivery of a new Adult Social Care System were supported by complete and credible information.“BetterGov’s knowledge in complex system migrations from multiple systems within Social Care, Education and Housing proved invaluable to Croydon. We were given the confidence to finalise our procurement approach, organisation strategy and delivery structure to implement a new fit-for-purpose system.”​

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