Government finance pros look to get the most of tech and data in long-term plan

HM Treasury will next year create a plan for the remainder of the decade which, according to second perm sec Cat Little, will focus on skills, technology and data use

The yearly Permanent Secretaries Roundup published by PublicTechnology sister publication Civil Service World sees government’s senior leaders discuss the experiences of the past year – as well as shedding light on their plans for festive season. Cat Little, head of the government finance function and second permanent secretary to the Treasury, reveals how the department will next year create a long-term plan that places a firm focus on digital and data.

Tell us three words that sum up your 2023… 
Resilience, tenacity, productivity.

…And why you chose those words
Resilience – I am constantly working at it both professionally and personally. 

Tenacity – so many things need patience and constant attention to achieve sustainable outcomes. Having a plan and sticking to it has been fundamental to how we have driven efficiency and transformation in government finance especially.

Productivity – my favourite subject. Much of the year has been about driving forward productivity across the public sector, finding innovative ways to deliver more and better outcomes through tech, data, AI and better use of our talented people’s time and energy.

What are your organisational and personal priorities for 2024? 
Next year’s priorities for HMT and government finance: 

  • developing our new Future of Finance strategy for 2030 with teams across government. Big themes will be: new skills, new ways of harnessing data and tech, and making the most of delivering with other functions in multi-disciplinary teams.
  • Public sector productivity and reform.
  • Maintaining a relentless focus on spending money well to deliver better outcomes for citizens.

On a personal note, I am determined to get a 10km PB…

What’s your favourite festive treat, and what makes you say: “Bah, humbug”?     
So many festive treats and I think we deserve them all. I am a big fan of mini mince pies, stollen and pigs in blankets. I don’t understand why these aren’t more readily available in vast quantities all year round.

Running out of festive treats and having to wear a paper hat tend to lead to a bah humbug.

All entries in Civil Service World’s 2023 Permanent Secretaries Roundup can be read here

PublicTechnology staff

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