Independent review of Govt's digital comms finds "pervasive lack of trust in staff"

The Government's Digital Communication Capability Review, published today, has called on the Government to work to overcome an "overriding preoccupation with risks" and "a pervasive lack of trust in staff".

Alex Aiken: making digital mainstream
Alex Aiken: making digital mainstream

It recommended improving objective-setting and evaluation, making digital communication mainstream and closer collaboration with GDS, the organisation that runs the Gov.uk platform.

Executive director of government communications Alex Aiken has pledged to follow "the vast majority" of the recommendations.

The review found while there were pockets of good practice in some specialist teams, digital communication in government is developing less well in the mainstream.

It argued that as a result the Government is being "outpaced by the best of the commercial and NGO worlds".

CIPR president-elect Stephen Waddington said that while the findings of the report were not surprising and would have been the same for any large organisation or business, the review was bold in its recommendations.

"The plan to tackle the issue is ambitious and it would be a fairly radical shift for the Government," he said. "It’s impressive the way they’ve grasped the nettle."

In a letter responding to the review, Aiken said: "It is my intention to accept and implement the vast majority of your recommendations to make government communications digital by default. This review marks the end of the ‘press notice by default’ style of communicating and will herald a new approach based on measured digital campaign communications."

Read the full review

Cabinet Office Digital Comms Capability Review

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