Case Study Of The UK Government Digital Services
I’m from the UK Government Digital Service - known as GDS.
GDS is a multidisciplinary team of developers, designers, writers, product managers, researchers, analysts, technical architects and others, based in London.
GDS is a multidisciplinary team of developers, designers, writers, product managers, researchers, analysts, technical architects and others, based in London. We’re responsible for the digital transformation of government.
And we do it all in the open. We code in the open. I 'm going to tell you why and how we do that.
The story of GDS begins back in 2010, back when the government’s digital main offering consisted of Directgov - a consumer-facing portal. There was also a separate site, Business Link, aimed at businesses. Directgov was run in a very old-fashioned manner. There were major …show more content…
This turned out to be far from the case. All around us, there were teams working quietly to change the IT culture of their department, in places you’d have never thought would be possible. But because we didn’t feel like we could be open, we weren’t able to learn from each other. They wouldn’t come to light until we were looking at DirectGov for transition, moving over 1,700 sites to one central portal.
Trust and responsibility
One of the reasons for this secrecy is that the way we did security relied on a lot of obscurity. But more worryingly, it relied on specifying version numbers in documents and then hiding them.
That’s no way to do business and we were strongly aware that we had to change it. We had to Recognise the expertise of the team and invest in them. and invest in the team. Those basic principles of trusting our developers, and being responsible in our work..
There are other things we have to consider when we think about being responsible with how we code at GDS.
The user is the