The plenary session will be followed by a choice of informative seminar sessions featuring case studies from across the public sector.

Please see below for more details of the plenary and seminars…


Agenda – plenary and seminars

Wednesday 21st June 2023, Manchester Central, Manchester M2 3GX


09:30 Plenary session

Chair: Councillor Eamonn O’Brien, GMCA Lead for Education, Skills, Work, Apprenticeships & Digital and Leader, Bury Council

Patrick Cahill, Deputy Director of Network Services, Crown Commercial Service

Digital First – How Crown Commercial Service are helping to deliver a digital future for the Public Sector by working with customers and suppliers to be at the forefront in developing dynamic commercial technology solutions that enable digital transformation. 

Gillian Stewart, Chief Digital Officer, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities

DLUHC – Supporting modern resilient councils through digital transformation

Douglas Hamandishe, Chief Digital Officer, Centric Health Media

Unleashing the Power of AI: Transforming Supply and Demand in the Digital Era
Step into the world of digital transformation as we explore the evolving landscape of supply and demand business models. While traditional approaches have long been the foundation of our economy, the emergence of big data, machine learning, and AI is reshaping the playing field. In this exciting journey, we witness how AI’s power to analyse immense data sets and personalise experiences is revolutionising pricing, production, and marketing strategies. However, as automation disrupts the workforce, we must navigate the social and economic implications. Join us as we uncover the future of business and dive into the possibilities and challenges presented by the AI revolution.

Martin Sadler, Executive Director – IT and Digital, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust

How reducing what you measure can help you improve your service

Simon Johnson, Senior Vice President, Freshworks UKI & I

How Public Sector organisations can implement world class self service portals and IT workflows, overnight
Freshworks is working with 60+ Local and Central Government departments and councils to achieve more outcomes with less budget. Implementing technology in the public sector is often seen as difficult, complex and expensive. We can prove that it is not. Our discussion will be on how to remove repetitive work for your public sector teams and to get up and running faster and in a scalable manner.

Following the Chair’s welcome and a presentation from each speaker the plenary session will end with Q&A, giving attendees the chance to ask questions and promote discussion on the issues which are of most importance to them.

1045 – 1115 Refreshments and networking

On-going throughout the day

Crown Commercial Service dedicated mini-theatre

This year, Crown Commercial Service has a dedicated mini-theatre, delivering a range of drop-in ‘Meet the Expert’ sessions. These bitesize sessions will focus on specific products and services from our portfolio, to give you the power to proceed with confidence.

The sessions will take place throughout the day and include:

  • mobile voice and data services
  • vertical application solutions
  • Network Services 3
  • Crown hosting virtual tours

Vertical Application Solutions
Vertical Application Solutions is a software focused solutions agreement designed to meet the specific needs of industry, business applications or services. Solutions include software licences, associated hardware, app-related consultancy services, software support and maintenance. This session will provide an overview of the new IoT structure and the enhancements made from the predecessor Data and Application Solutions.

Crown Hosting virtual tours
Crown Hosting provides buildings, rooms and colocation for the data centre ICT of public sector. The virtual tour of one of the data centres will provide you with insight into the monetary and carbon savings that Crown Hosting provides alongside world class availability and security of your data.

1115 – 1135

1A How to implement an ITSM Service Desk tool that users and support teams love: a case study with Citizens Advice
Join us in this interactive session; we’ll be presenting the findings of the ITSM Benchmark report 2023 to see where your Employee Service Management and Service Desk Maturity may be thriving and where it may be falling short. Hear how Citizens Advice has implemented a multichannel service desk that its users and support teams love, while also making some seriously impressive savings, from departmental budget savings, to automating processes that have saved up to 100 days a year.

Andy Ellis, Technology Service Delivery Manager, Citizens Advice
Simon Johnson, Senior VP for Freshworks UKI&I

1115 – 1135

1B How can IoT deliver value in the real world?
This session will explore how IoT has transformed the landscape of social care, energy consumption and facilities management. We will discuss real life case studies to demonstrate how IoT can be applied in the real world and support your digital transformation journey.

Andrew Shilton, Head of Solutions, MLL Telecom
Damon Thomas, CEO, Sensei Networks

1140 – 1200

2A Unlocking the potential: integrating care in the Cloud
Join us for a seminar session that explores the integration of cloud services in health and social care. Discover the immense opportunities and challenges that arise when harnessing cloud technologies to transform the delivery of care. With a focus on the NHS, we will discuss how cloud-based solutions can underpin new models of care, enabling seamless collaboration, real-time data sharing, and application access across the NHS ecosystem. Delving into the complexities of legacy systems, data interoperability, and cybersecurity, we will address the challenges and opportunities associated with integrating care in the cloud as well as give you insights into technical challenges, skills requirements, procurement considerations, and financial implications.
In this session, you will gain valuable insights, explore innovative strategies, and envision a digitally connected NHS where health and care professionals can deliver efficient, patient-centric care in a secure and collaborative environment.

Martin Dean, Chief Digital Transformation Officer of Healthcare, SCC

1140 – 1200

2B Collaborating the Halo way
The importance of integrating ITSM platforms with Collaborative Support Hubs – and what actually is ‘the Halo Way’?

Gianmarco Rubino – Product Manager, HaloITSM

1205 – 1225

3A 10 Insights: How leveraging industry best practice platforms to modernise customer engagement in public sector can enable faster, better and cheaper service delivery
Insights from helping UK Government modernise customer engagement and public service delivery across several departments including the delivery of 6 major programs in response to the pandemic and guidance on how correctly leveraging industry best practice platforms can accelerate service transformation for operational efficiency and an improved end customer experience.

James Lee-Smith, Vice-President, Strategy & Business Development, Salesforce

1205 – 1225

3B Buy with confidence, sell with focus – procurement lessons
John will share data-powered tactics to achieve better, faster, and cheaper procurement processes – and how you can too!

For buyers, we’ll dive into:

  • Supplier discovery
  • Supplier vetting
  • Price benchmarking
  • Peer monitoring

For suppliers, we’ll discuss how to focus on the right relationships, with the right buyers, at the right time, by::

  • Finding early buying signals
  • Discovering key decision-makers
  • Leveraging competitor & partner networks

John Witt, Co-Founder & CEO, Stotles

1225 – 1315 Lunch and networking

1315 – 1335

4A Blackpool – the home of ethically powered data
A confluence of ultra low latency fibre, transatlantic fibre connectivity and renewable energy make Blackpool the ideal place to decarbonise data. Hear about the journey Blackpool is on to develop future jobs and level up the community by developing ‘Silicon Sands’ a clean tech eco-system powered by renewable energy and waste heat from data.

Tony Doyle, Head of ICT Services, Blackpool Council and North West Regional Chair Socitm 

1315 – 1335

4B Breaking through the blockers – Addressing legacy challenges to drive digital innovation
The UK Public Sector is spending £2.3B every year on legacy IT and the pressure is on everyone to reduce this. Legacy software is a large part of this spend and whether organisations manage their IT in-house or through a managed service provider, someone has to pay for the annual maintenance of the software.

The maintenance polices imposed by software vendors carry significant potential risk for anyone with legacy software:
• Excessive annual maintenance costs
• Operational threats and overheads
• Delays to digital transformation projects

For anyone with IBM or HCL software, there is a high probability that current maintenance contracts waste money and put digital modernisation timetables at risk. Recognised by Gartner Group and Forrester as the world’s foremost provider of independent third-party software maintenance for IBM and HCl software, we will share case studies of how we are helping the UK Public Sector to break through the barriers imposed by vendor maintenance.

Rob Paddon, UK and Ireland Territory Manager, Origina

1340 – 1400

5A How the DLUHC Digital Planning Programme is #DoingPlanningDifferently to modernise England’s planning system
Working with a diverse range of public and private sector partners, DLUHC’s award winning Digital Planning Programme values innovation, collaboration and working in the open. The team at DLUHC are working on 4 key interventions to improve the current planning system, all of which make use of digital and data to support the co-creation of future focused, modern planning services. In this talk programme director, Milan Bogunovic, will share more about the work taking place, from making planning data easier to understand, use and trust, to working with Local Planning Authorities to design the next generation of planning services and funding a diverse range of councils to improve the digital tools they use for citizen engagement with the planning process.

Matthew Wood-Hill, Head of Planning Software, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities

1340 – 1400

5B Unlocking digital first experience with simple data-centric security tools – customer stories
Advances in technology have helped transform public sector services; employees are able to spend more time on mission-critical work, the public have a more convenient option to access critical services, and public sector organisations and departments can collaborate better to improve the delivery of public services.

While these trends bring massive opportunities, they also carry significant risks. Without the correct protections in place, cloud environments can leave sensitive data exposed and in breach of privacy and regulatory compliance.

Join Virtru as we look at key uses from the private, public & third sector and how by applying simple and easy to use data-centric security tools, they have enabled secure, compliant digital services that speed communication, improve the public experience and power digital transformation.

Llewellyn Wells, Solutions Consultant, Virtru

1405 – 1425

6A Driving smarter healthcare through Virtual Wards
With virtual wards a key enabler of smart healthcare, how can digital leadership drive their adoption and maximise the benefits to patients and clinical staff. This presentation will cover:

  • What makes a virtual ward virtual
  • Why now is the time to adopt them
  • How best to maximise their effectiveness

Connie Hutchins, Senior Commercial Lead, Crown Commercial Service
Charlie Stephens, Digital Framework Strategy and Policy Manager, NHS Central Commercial Function, NHS England
Dan Howard, leads on Spark: The Innovation Marketplace, Crown Commercial Service

1405 – 1425

6B Greater Manchester doing digital differently
The Greater Manchester Digital Blueprint for 2023-26 has been developed in collaboration with stakeholders from across Greater Manchester’s digital sector and shares strategic commitments to put people, environment, and place firmly at the heart of plans. During this session, Phil will share how Greater Manchester is bettering the lives its people and for them to be empowered by the opportunities a digitally fuelled city-region brings, how the region is using technology and data better to make this a greener, fairer, more prosperous city region. The recently launched Greater Manchester Digital Blueprint sets 2023-26 ambitions and the regions approach to meeting them.

Phil Swan, Director for Digital, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA)

1425 – 1455 Refreshments and networking

1455 – 1515

7A Innovation in web publishing, made by councils for councils
LocalGov Drupal is a publicly owned asset that delivers a better digital experience for citizens, improves service outcomes, and saves money. It brings together a community of digital leaders, developers, and content designers from local councils all across the UK.

398 UK councils are each rebuilding their main websites every 3-5 years. The user needs are largely the same, but councils don’t swap notes or collaborate, instead creating expensive standalone solutions to shared problems. LocalGov Drupal is the antidote to this. The community works together to produce a best practice web publishing platform that is freely available to all participating councils. It helps councils to deliver a better digital experience for their citizens while at the same time saving money for vital frontline services.

Will Callaghan, Project Lead, LocalGov Drupal

1455 – 1515

7B How the NHS can overcome the challenges associated with legacy ICT and outline a better way forward
Following the publication of the government’s Cloud First Policy and the roadmap for digital and data transformation there is no doubt that the NHS can benefit from modernising its ICT. However, it will also face varying challenges when attempting to implement this policy. This session explains why a migration strategy is not a one size fits all and outlines the various options available to NHS trusts to balance performance with cost, protect patient data and improve carbon net zero outcomes.

Stuart Watkins, Senior Business Development Director, Crown Commercial Service 

1520 – 1540

8A Interoperability – a panel discussion with the Government and Industry Interoperability Group
Interoperability is a key enabler which supports several Government’s cross-cutting priorities: health (ICS), safety and wellbeing, building safety, Net Zero, as well as delivering better use of Government built assets. To date, the UK Public Sector has not realised its ambition of creating joined up public services underpinned by effective interoperable systems to share data across multiple organisations & geographies.

Public Sector organisations recognise that high levels of interoperability and the ability for technologies to seamlessly integrate are critical for future sustainability and the effective delivery of secure online public services, however varying data standards, fragmentation, capability and funding have been some of the main barriers to achieving interoperability.

The purpose of this panel is to introduce the work being undertaken by the Government & Industry Interoperability Group (GIIG) in conjunction with the CCS to promote interoperability. During the panel, the concept of interoperability will be introduced, including how it can be used to improve the digital information management in the public sector and how new interoperability standards created by the GIIG will support interoperability via the procurement process.

Questions to the panel will follow an initial introduction to the GIIG and its work, outlining the development of the GIIG to date, lessons learned, what will happen next and why. There will then be a chance for attendees to address questions to the panel, all of whom are members of the GIIG, on interoperability issues.

The panel members are: Fiona Moore, Paul Wilkinson (technology and communications consultant) and Simon Lewis (partner in the construction and engineering team at solicitors Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP).

Panel Chair: Andrea Fitzgerald, Head of Region (South), Crown Commercial Service and GIIG Procurement Champion
Fiona Moore, Technical Lead, GIIG (Government and Industry Interoperability Group)
Paul Wilkinson, Technology and Communications Consultant
Simon Lewis, Partner Construction and Engineering, Womble Bond Dickinson

1520 – 1540

8B Who suffers from digital stress during any digital transformation? – How we utilise Hubs and Heroes to deliver change and reduce stress
A case study from Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust

Mike Culshaw, Chief Technology Officer, Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust
Marc Owen , Head of Customer Experience, IM&T/Digital, Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust

1545 – 1605

9A Customer focus, fix your service, help your users
What happens when you change the way you treat your customers, how reducing what you measure can help you improve your service desk and why improving a first time fix is a terrible thing.

Martin Sadler, Executive Director – IT & Digital, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust

1545 – 1605

9B Secure data, sustainable future: Building resilient tech foundations in the UK Public Sector
This session will explore the indispensable role of solid data infrastructure foundations in safeguarding the UK public sector to protect against ransomware attacks and achieving sustainability goals. Delve into the dynamic landscape of data fortification and discover practical strategies to be able to always recover your organization’s data and minimise your carbon emissions.

Leigh Carpenter: CTO for UKI Public Sector, NetApp

1605 Panel debate and Q&A

Our panel of experts discuss the findings and key points from the day and subjects raised by the audience:  your chance to ask any burning questions!

Patrick Cahill, Deputy Director of Network Services, Crown Commercial Service

Martin Sadler, Executive Director IT and Digital, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust

Phil Swan, Director for Digital, GMCA

Martin Dean, Chief Digital Transformation Officer of Healthcare, SCC

Join us at the end of the day for a drinks reception (1635 – 1730)

Please note agenda, sessions and workshop times and speakers are subject to change