Suppliers welcome new PSN compliance regime

Industry has welcomed changes implemented this week to the public services network (PSN) compliance regime in an attempt to increase the number of suppliers in the market.

The Government Digital Service (GDS) has realigned its compliance requirements with the model adopted for the Digital Marketplace because only 29 suppliers are currently providing PSN services.

The changes include a rewritten code template to move away from a “one size fits all” approach, a simpler Code of Connection, and assessment of companies’ infrastructure rather than each service they provide.

Des Ward, information governance director at public sector ICT body Innopsis, said: “Innopsis welcome the steps that GDS have made away from the elements of the compliance regime that imposed increased cost on customers for no tangible benefits.

“We hope that GDS works collaboratively to build on the successful delivery of open service management and technical interoperability standards that underpin the network platform. A reliable network platform is crucial to deliver on the user needs of both the public and third sectors as we continue the efforts to deliver better, lower cost public services.”

However, he said that there were still barriers standing in the way of effective inter-agency information sharing.

He said: “Given the reinforcement of risk and governance on the public sector customers in the new regimes, we need to learn from the past and leverage the maturity of existing governance frameworks – i.e. the HMT Orange book, ISO 27001 and the wide range of information governance legislation – that originated from government as it grappled with the aftermath of dotcom over a decade ago.”

The launch of the new compliance regime was delayed from the original planned go-live date of April to ensure the public beta was fully tested and to incorporate feedback.

The old compliance regime will run alongside the new system until 30 June.

A statement from GDS said: “Of course this is not the end: we’ll continue to look at the process as technology and the requirements of our users evolve, but it’s particularly pleasing to go-live with a process that achieves the original goals.”

Colin Marrs

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