bedigital helps Government Digital Service provide a seamless wifi experience.
The Government Digital Service (GDS) is a centre of excellence in digital, technology and data, collaborating with departments to help them with their own digital transformation. Starting with user needs, GDS works to a set of design principles guiding everything they do.
Traditionally, the provision of guest wireless networking (wifi) at government departments and related locations was implemented by each building owner. For example, HMRC would design, procure, deploy and operate wifi within their department and office locations, the Home Office would go through the same process, as would all other government departments, regulators and other agencies and bodies.
For civil servants, and members of the public, visiting and working at these sites, the experience was poor:
Movement between buildings was a not a seamless experience – a username/password combination was typically required for each site location
At least 24 hours’ notice was often required for access to wireless network services
Some organisations were in contracts which charged for each temporary guest account
Also, in light of emerging threats, GDS and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) had issued new advice on wireless security, which few of the existing solutions complied with.
CTS (Common Technology Services), a programme within GDS initiated a project to introduce a centrally managed wifi solution that enabled government organisations to replace their current user and guest wifi solutions with a single secure wifi connection, whilst leveraging their existing infrastructure.
Supporting a mixed team of internal resources and external consultants, bedigital provided specialists to fulfil technical architecture, product and service owner roles. Focusing on Government design principles, bedigital engaged with users and stakeholders including HMRC and the Home Office, identifying user needs, maintaining regular communication and facilitating department briefings.
Prior to bedigital’s involvement, GovWifi had failed its beta assessment stage, however, within 6 months, GovWifi passed the beta assessment stage. Within 11 months the project was cited as an exemplar of how to turnaround a project, as well as one of the major successes for GDS.
Significant adoption of GovWifi
The service is currently being used by over 70 organisations in over 300 locations (and growing). A publicly accessible dashboard summarises signups and transaction volumes estimates 20% month on month growth.
Improved customer experience (CX) and operational efficiencies
The use of a single username/password across multiple government locations, especially the 15% of users who are visiting more than one locations per day, experience numerous benefits.
National and International service demand
Due to the successful implementation and outcomes of GovWifi, demand for the service has extended internationally, including into other areas outside of government such as police forces and doctors surgeries etc.
An enabler for further technology and productivity enhancements
Opportunity for the expansion of bring your own device (BYOD) policies as well as improved business continuity, particularly when coupled with increased use of cloud services (e.g. Microsoft Office 365, Google G-Suite).