Thomas Bridge 12 June 2014

Technology gap losing billions in potential savings, study claims

Councils and public sector bodies could be missing out on £7.2bn savings thanks to inefficiencies and a ‘technology gap’, figures suggest.

Poor connectivity and limited access to the right tools is costing frontline community teams 53 hours a year at a cost of £2.2bn, according to O2 and the Centre for Economic and Business Research.

Research claims better connectivity could help healthcare workers cut time taken to complete follow up tasks to home visits by almost a third.

Better technology could also help employees spend 22 extra days a year working from home – a 90% increase on current levels.

Billy D’Arcy, managing director of public sector business at O2, said: ‘As the UK economy starts to show signs of recovery, pressure remains on public services to look for efficiencies to cut the remaining deficit.

‘Alongside this, there is a growing demand from the public for better services and access to information delivered through new channels, such as mobile apps.

‘The right investment in digital technology can have a real impact on social value, for example providing frontline staff with devices to empower them to work more flexibly, or giving doctors the technology to deliver remote diagnosis to patients that need help. Government and businesses urgently need to work closely together to make sure that these crucial public services – which we rely upon every day – are fit for the future.’

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