https://dvladigital.blog.gov.uk/2013/07/01/dvlas-service-manager-role/

DVLA’s new service manager

Firstly, let me introduce myself. I’m DVLA’s Service Manager for our three digital exemplars – integrated enquiry platform, change of keeper and personalised registrations. As Service Manager I’m accountable for developing and delivering user focused digital services. Together with the teams involved in delivering our exemplars, I’ll be using this blog to keep you updated on our progress.

I started in the role on 3 June 2013 and since then it has been a whirlwind of training, meeting new people, presentations, workshops and train journeys. I have also seen more post it notes than I ever dreamt possible!

The Service Manager induction has been an excellent opportunity to network and find out more about what else is going on in government. The group have shared experiences, identified we have similar issues, and supported each other to overcome them. We‘ve had a deep dive into all things digital from developing user stories through to meeting the digital by default service standards.

I‘ve been able to apply these new skills back in the day job as we‘ve kicked off the discovery process for our change of keeper and personalised registrations exemplars. There are millions of users of these services and we have tried to focus on what these users want, whilst also aligning it to the agency’s goals.

On the integrated enquiry platform, we’re making great progress on delivering driver data to the insurance industry whilst at the same time, allowing individual users to view their own driving record in the future. The initial user testing has been positive and in the next month we’ll take this up another notch to keep iterating and improving based on feedback.

11 comments

  1. Julie

    Looking forward to hearing more about what's involved being a service manager in the new digital world!

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  2. Keith

    Cherished Transfer, Retention, Assignments all produce revenue direct to DVLA. Is there a timeframe for these to be done on-line?

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    • rohan

      Keith. There is no firm timescale as yet. We have recently kicked off a piece of work to start us on this process. It will be the feature of a future blog so please keep a look out for updates as we progress

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      • Keith

        Rohan, thanks for update. When Office closures announced December 11 more applications on-line were promised. 18months later and just starting to look at it is disappointing! Why the delay on a promise? Seems likely years of postal which is already longer than 5/7 days locally?

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        • Rohan

          The original intention was to support local office closures by migrating customers to online self-service channels. While we are mitigating the closures by using intermediaries to transact electronically (around a third of the transactions currently done at local offices will be migrated to intermediary channels), we have delayed delivery of services such as personalised registrations online until after the offices are closed. This decision was in response to publication of the Digital by Default agenda and allows us to work closely with GDS to find better ways of delivering digital services to our customers. While customers may send more applications through the post initially as a result of local office closure, customer service levels will still be maintained and this is still seen as a step change towards a digital business model.

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  3. Grant

    Fair point Keith, 2011 was a long time ago so plenty should have happened but apparently nothing worth writting home about has to date..Surely we should have kept what we had that worked until we had something functional to replace it..No? Then maybe started to phase the requirement for local offices out. Would have made more sence, as it is the current service will and has already started to produce problems certainly with the cherished transfers where they are being rejected, often incorrectly because the staff DVLA has put in place dont have the experience with the not unsurprisingly complicated transfer rules. Think its time DVLA put it's money where it's mouth is and deliver what they promised sooner rather than later. Dealers want to sell cars that often have trade in vehicles that have private plates, we dont get the money from a deal until the finance is signed or payment made directly which doesnt take place until the vehicle handover. The last few weeks has been a nightmare, waiting 3/4 weeks on an application to be returned and allow us to do our buisness. Pretty poor service DVLA! Look forward to some positive updates on this Rohan

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  4. james mark

    good job and feedback is very important

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  5. Noel Edwards

    Apologies for coming late to this thread. As one who has been following the ‘Digital by Default’ transformation of DVLA’s services with great interest, and although total supportive of the wider aims of this venture, I have reservations about how it will be achieved, especially with regards the time that it will take to complete this exercise. Having also had past experience of working on DVLA systems as a contractor, I know only too well how large and complex they are, far more so than is commonly believed.

    Most of everything I have read to date has been about the adoption of agile methodologies to construct the new web service interfaces, which is a major step in the right direction as driving change forward used to be a painfully slow and ineffective process previously.

    However, building a new front end is the easy bit relatively speaking, the much more difficult work will be in migrating/re-engineering the existing back end systems onto the new (cloud based?) architecture, especially the porting of the data from many different data stores.

    As an engineer, I am fascinated with the approach that will be taken to achieve this transformation, and it would be most interesting if a future blog post could cover the architectural and implementation approach being taken to bring this about, especially with regard to the following:

    - Are the new digital services platforms being built alongside the existing systems, such that the implementation will be big bang, i.e. turn off the old and switch on the new, or will the systems be linked (from a data point of view) with new services going live as soon as they have been developed and tested?

    - Are these completely new and fully re-engineered systems or a conversion of the existing systems software to new (presumably open source?) software technologies?

    - Historically large government IT projects have always been fraught with problems caused by either the time or the cost in delivering them, most notably the recent NHS fiasco. Noting that GDS aim to deliver all the digital exemplars in 400 days, this seems a highly challenging if not impossible target. What confidence is there that this can be achieved, and what would happen if say DVLA were only a third of the way through the programme on the 400th day, especially as I believe the Agency’s current IT outsourcing contract expires in 2015? Do GDS have a proven track record in this kind of undertaking? I guess that the nightmare scenario would be that the money runs out mid transformation, such that the supported IT estate would encompass new, old and very old legacy systems together with the new service oriented architecture.

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    • Rohan

      Thanks for your feedback. The process we are adopting not only helps us to deliver new services to our end users but also starts us on the journey of transforming our technical infrastructure. As for the suggestion of making this the subject of a future blog, we would be delighted to expand on how we are achieving this through our digital exemplars and how they integrate with our existing services.

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  6. Stan

    I have put the reg in but as it is a private reg it will not accept it ??

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    • Rohan

      Hi Stan, Can you tell us what service you have been using. You can also contact us via twitter @DVLAgovuk

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