PSN Update: The Mother Network

The creation of Public Services Network (PSN) – one network for all UK public sector organisations – has led to significant cost savings and introduced a more competitive, level playing field for commercial suppliers.

Operating within central and local government and across the health, education and defence sectors, it is truly an ambitious project enabling better delivery of public services from any provider, at any location.

Whitehall Media’s 5th annual PSEICT conference was honoured to host John Stubley, Operations Director of the PSN, who spoke at length to an audience of senior public sector professionals about the general public sector ICT environment, what the PSN is doing and its achievements to date.

Explaining its importance, Stubley recounted how, prior to the PSN, the public sector ICT infrastructure was both fragmented and inefficient. There was limited collaboration, a lot of duplication and complexity, little optimisation and increased cost:

“A couple of years ago, [there were] over two thousand networks, five and a half million people connected to it, [and] thousands of sites across the UK. It was inflexible, high cost, and it was difficult to share information [and services] across it”.

The PSN on the other hand has offered seamless connectivity, allowing for a single set of shared standards to be established. Greater interoperability and efficiency are additional benefits, together with the reduction to cost and complexity of procurement, and enhanced benefits of a multi-supplier environment.

“It may not seem obvious to many people outside,” said Stubley. “But the assurance service has sped up an awful lot. Many services are getting through quicker, there’s more consistency to the approach”.

Increased inter-connectedness is enabling growth, innovation and greater transformation within the public sector as a whole.

“The PSN is introducing a very different type of environment. It is an environment where effectively the walls have been broken down between different organisations – and sharing of information is encouraged”.

Stubley went on to speak about the PSN2 framework and separate projects for the health, policing and emergency services where, he maintained, there were reliable plans in place for when they migrate to their own respective networks.

Join us for Whitehall Media’s 6th annual PSEICT conference which will be held on 11 November, 2014. Please check for more details about the event.