New one stop service for GOV.UK unveiled

Plans to make it easier for the public to access online government services via an app have been set out today by Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Steve Barclay.

The plans mean that the public will no longer have to remember multiple usernames and passwords to access services such as free school meals, support for disabled family members and changing driver licence details in the future.

The announcement builds on the Government's change of approach to single sign-in, reported in April.

The new app will allow people to access services much more easily, instead of having to go through multiple online processes. It will give users the option to use the technology in their smartphones to quickly access government services online via GOV.UK.

Currently, there are 191 different ways for people to set up a variety of accounts to access different services on GOV.UK, with 44 different sign-in methods.

This is in stark contrast to the private sector, where people expect to be able to log into and access a variety of different services via their smartphone.

Stephen Barclay Cabinet Office Minister"Now more than ever, it is important that government responds to people’s heightened expectations about the services they use," said Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Steve Barclay. "During the pandemic, people have had to interact with public services in a variety of new ways, including the NHS app and the vaccine booking service. People expect government to be data-driven and digitally literate, and this will be a priority."

As part of the development of the app, the Government Digital Service (GDS) is working across all government departments to make sure as many services as possible can be used.

The app is being developed with data security at its heart, with robust data protection principles in place to make sure users remain in control of their data.

Use of the app will be optional, with people still able to access government services in different ways if they prefer.

Barclay also announced the members of the new Digital Advisory Board, which has been created to give advice to ministers and officials across government and accelerate digital change.

Members of the board are leaders from industry, drawn from organisations and include:

  • James Bilefield - Chair/Board Director (SThree, MoneySupermarket, Stagecoach, Teach First, Science Museum)
  • Zaka Mian - Former Group Transformation Director, Lloyds Banking Group
  • Monique Shivanandan - Chief Information Security Officer, HSBC
  • Matthew Timms - Chief Digital and Information Officer, E.ON SE
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