Increase visibility of and trust in available IT solutions
For a public administration to reuse another administration’s IT solution, it should first know that the solution exists, where it is located, and then trust that it is safe, technically mature and documented enough to be reused.
Public administrations already make their reusable IT solutions available online in a number of national and European registries or catalogues. However, although there are already many such registries available, it is often difficult for public administrations to make a sound decision about which solution to choose because of the poor quality of the description provided.
Another issue is that public administrations do not share information in advance about upcoming shared services, public APIs or solutions under development in general. This results in potential solution vendors not being able to sufficiently prepare for opportunities to develop shared services for public administrations or to build on publicly available APIs. Consequently, public administrations do not obtain timely and adequate responses to their needs.
8.1. Use common registries to share your solutions
To facilitate the identification of and access to IT solutions, it is recommended that public administrations make them available in single access points such as specialised common registries, instead of limiting publication on their own websites. A common registry is a system devoted to the proper structuring, publishing and description of IT solutions (including governance schemas, business processes, technical architecture, software code, etc.)
Joinup.eu is a European platform that allows public administrations to: access solutions published in a central catalogue; share experiences and good practices; and work together in a collaborative way. 
By populating a comprehensive registry of IT solutions open to different organisations, public administrations increase their visibility and the possibility that their published IT solutions will be reused.
8.2. Use standard ways to describe your IT solutions
If public administrations do not trust an IT solution, they are most unlikely to use it. Raising awareness and communicating about IT solutions, as well as providing examples of their successful reuse, help build trust, credibility and confidence.
Public administrations should describe their solutions in standardised ways  when publishing them in common registries, thus facilitating their categorisation in different themes (policy, business, technology) and their overall searchability.
If other registries use similar ways of describing their content, solutions can easily be published in several such registries, increasing their visibility.
8.3. Provide insights into the quality, usage and support structure of your IT solutions
Information about an IT solution’s levels of quality and expected support is fundamental to any decision as to whether to reuse it or not. To this end, administrations that share their IT solutions should document the following information as a minimum:
- the governance and business models, including how sustainability is taken into account;
- the aim of the solution and related policies or legislation;
- the solution’s target audience, including the size of the organisation(s) using it;
- the targeted sector (for sectoral solutions);
- the solution’s functional requirements and use cases;
- a description of the business process;
- the maintenance and support structure;
- test scenarios and results;
- user experience tests;
- planned future releases;
- reuse and deployment cases and metrics.
It is important to note that standardised descriptions on their own are not sufficient; the quality of the data included in a description is paramount.
|Recommended measures for central bodies|