Re-using existing public sector assets is one of the principles of the new ICT procurement policy, published by the government of Scotland on 12 December. Re-use where possible provides a better return on investment of the existing ICT solutions, the policy explains. The government is also about to revamp its open source policy.
"Good procurement is vitally important to both public sector and business alike", the government explains in the introduction to its new policy. "Public services need to make the best use of public money and focus on helping the government achieve its overarching purpose and strategic objectives."
The policy aims to increase the use of ICT solutions for providing government services.
The procurement outline is linked to the country's plans to deliver electronic government services. This strategy, called "Scotland's Digital Future: Delivery of Public Services", was issued in September. It is part of 'Scotland's Digital Future: A Strategy for Scotland', published in March 2011.
A first report on the progress was made public in early October. The Scottish government writes: "those public services that can be delivered online, will be delivered online."
Open source plan
The annual report also announces an update to the country's open source strategy. "Our open source strategy predates the digital public services strategy", explains Jane Morgan, Deputy Director of Scotland's Digital Public Services. "We are now looking at what further principles or guidance should be set out in this area, working with industry stakeholders."
She adds that Scotland will soon issue an overall framework programme for the country's public sector, which also includes open source.