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Emerging technologies make their mark on public service

Overview

Emerging technologies are likely to transform public sector departments to the same extent as the advent of computerisation in the 1960s and 70s.

But how far have public agencies progressed in implementing emerging technologies in the UK? What impacts are they having already? What barriers exist to further development? And what can be done to implement them more quickly and effectively?

Accenture’s Public Service Emerging Technologies Research polled nearly 800 public sector technology leaders, across nine countries, to shed light on these questions. Emerging technologies include: advanced analytics, predictive modeling, machine learning, intelligent automation, biometrics and natural language processing. This report focus on the most significant results for public sector departments in the UK. 

Access the global research report

Investing IT budget into intelligent technologies

71% of survey respondents in the UK are allocating over 10% of their budgets into transformative projects - successes shown to date have been new services/applications, a cost reduction, and improving security and risk issues.

55% Have used intelligent technologies to innovate and create new services or applications


  55%

Have used intelligent technologies to innovate and create new services or applications

48% Have reduced costs through smarter ways of working


  48%

Have reduced costs through smarter ways of working

48% Have reduced costs through smarter ways of working


  42%

Have managed to reduce risk and improve security (i.e. fraud, crime, system abuse)

Predictive Analytics - high awareness, patchy adoption

Most UK technology leaders are aware of advanced data analytics/predictive modelling and many of them have piloted or implemented it to a certain extent. However only a very small percentage are piloting intelligent process automation. Among those aware of each technology, there are major differences in the relative rates of implementation.

95% Of UK technology leaders aware of advanced data analytics/predictive modelling


  95%

Of UK technology leaders aware of advanced data analytics/predictive modelling

76% Have piloted or implemented advanced analytics/predictive modelling (highest of countries surveyed).


  76%

Have piloted or implemented advanced analytics/predictive modelling (highest of countries surveyed).

34%  Are piloting/implementing natural language processing and biometrics, but only 10% adopting video analytics


  34%

Are piloting/implementing natural language processing and biometrics, but only 10% adopting video analytics

Partnerships to help reduce the talent gap

The public sector is keen to partner with the private sector, to inspire and help them to embrace and utilise new technologies - however there are barriers to overcome if they want to do so.

  • 86% of UK organisations look to the private sector for examples of successful implementations of intelligent technologies
  • 73% say the private sector has helped them to a considerable extent
  • 61% would be willing to embrace a public-private partnerships and new commercial models and 63% are considering as-a-service models
  • 49% say they are not permitted to partner with the private sector
  • 50% currently use a mix of public and private sector talent.

A mixed picture for the workforce

26% surveyed see intelligent technologies as something that can free workers to deliver more valuable and personalised services, which is similar a similar rate to the US and France. However, it is very different from Singapore (85%), Australia (73%), and Japan (71%). However, most people do think that intelligent technologies will improve job satisfaction and the majority of departments who have implementing advanced analytics are doing so to support the work of their staff.

82% Believe that intelligent technologies will improve job satisfaction for employees

82%

Believe that intelligent technologies will improve job satisfaction for employees

55% Are already implementing advanced analytics to support the work of their employees

55%

Are already implementing advanced analytics to support the work of their employees

Barriers to adoption - leadership knowledge and legacy systems

Respondents agreed that legacy system integration is the top barrier to implementation, and the second-biggest obstacle is a lack of leadership support.

27% Think that Senior leaders are informed about intelligent technologies and their potential.

27%

Think that Senior leaders are informed about intelligent technologies and their potential.