Born out of the necessity for collaboration, resilience and service efficiencies, Public Protection Cymru is a pioneering, innovative and collaborative project, delivering digital transformational change to the provision of Local Government Public Protection services across Wales.

The requirement for Welsh Local Authority Public Protection services to utilise one shared back-office software system was identified early on in the project as being fundamental to achieving key innovations and service efficiencies. A shared platform became a prerequisite and an essential building block in order that future resilience and collaboration could be achieved, aiding seamless and integrated working practices across Wales. In response to the identified need for digital transformation, 19 of the 22 Local Authorities in Wales tendered for a framework agreement, which would appoint one supplier of a cloud-based, single-instance software solution for Public Protection services. The framework was successfully awarded to Tascomi Ltd, an innovative and experienced Northern Ireland Software Development company and the recent Platinum Sponsors of CIEH Wales Annual Conference 2016.

In less than a year, 3 Welsh Authorities have migrated to Tascomi’s Public Protection software solution with others in the process of planning their move to the cloud-based, single instance. During the project’s early stages of implementation significant challenges were resolved, for example with coordinated Project Management of the shared system; ensuring all Local Authorities agreed with the shared configuration of the software; that data migration from existing software systems was robust; all whilst safeguarding continual and comprehensive engagement between all Local Authorities involved. These challenges faced and overcome by early adopting Local Authorities will serve to benefit later adopters of the system, but fundamentally, the main focus throughout Public Protection Cymru is an openness to change and adaptation, to ensure sustainable benefits for all Welsh Authorities, now and into the future.

leighton andrews

The direct benefits of the shared system include; the provision of tangible and other realisable savings; reduction of costs and system maintenance by utilising a shared fully managed, cloud-hosted, single-instance solution; seamless integration for facilitation of agile and mobile working; enablement of collaboration, resilience and possibly future mergers of services between Local Authorities and other executive agencies; a flexible phased approach for Welsh Local Authorities via the Framework agreement; the potential through shared working for development of all Wales data registers, information production and data returns.

Leighton Andrews, Welsh Minister for Public Services has praised the Public Protection Cymru Framework as being highly significant, “Adopting the new Public Protection cloud-based software system will help enable a number of very important deliverables for the Local Authorities involved. It will provide cashable savings, achieve efficiencies and consistency in service delivery, as well as supporting resilience and mobile working options. 

This initiative is highly significant as an important signal of Local Authorities working together, mobilising around a common problem with a shared agenda and a clear objective, to achieve better outcomes.

Again, it is about Leadership – about being open, curious, networked, collaborative and digitally engaged.”

Public Protection Cymru is an example of Local Authorities future proofing their services – a challenging task in times of financial pressures and on-going austerity. Welsh Public Protection services, critically, have had the foresight to move forward with an innovative, pioneering project, which will enable significant on-going cost savings and seamless data transfer between Welsh Local Authorities as they are currently structured.

The modern customer-citizen expects more and Local Authorities need to think differently; to utilise available technology, to open new channels and to redefine the boundaries of customer service. Public Protection Cymru exemplifies the kind of pioneering and change-leadership behaviours which all Public Protection services must adopt in order to meet the changing demands of modern Public Services.

Public Protection Cymru is currently nominated for the All Wales Continuous Improvement Community’s (AWCIC) Annual Awards 2016 for ‘Collaboration’ and ‘Innovation’. The Awards are an exciting annual event hosted by Good Practice Wales, which serve as an important recognition of the hard work being carried out by Public Sector continuous improvement practitioners throughout Wales.

Find out more about the AWCIC Awards:

Find out more about Tascomi Public Protection:

This article is an extract from Environmental Health News Magazine, the magazine of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.