2023 UK Public Sector Tech Trends

Posted October 18, 2023

As 2023 has got off to a flying start, we’re looking ahead to the rest of the  year with one specific question in mind: what does 2023 digital transformation look like? 

From local government, healthcare and NHS to social housing and higher education, every corner of the public sector is accelerating transformation – but how will the next year inform what happens in the Public Sector?

Artificial Intelligence & cognitive services

Machine learning has been a slightly daunting topic for those involved in public services. AI has been the talk of the wider tech space for a few years, though it hasn’t really broken through to the public sector – but that’s all about to change in 2023. Its stability in recent times has allowed organisations to identify a wide range of use cases. Healthcare, NHS, local authority, housing and education sectors are increasingly adopting cognitive services – software that mimics human learning to perform tasks.

From image recognition in clinical photography to decision making in benefit applications – the power of machine learning is almost limitless within public services and sectors are taking note.

Smart technologies and cybersecurity

Regional governments and smaller organisations face increased pressure to improve services while significantly reducing operating costs. That said, we anticipate continued investments in essential areas, such as defence and healthcare, where organisations are looking to increase efficiency and resilience through embedded smart technologies and cybersecurity solutions. Vendors must look to align their services with this requirement.

In parallel to these five service areas, organisations should look for opportunities to develop social value programmes, especially in areas that are commercially viable. 

Despite budgetary pressures, strategic and trusted technology and IT services providers that recognise the pressures brought by increased public borrowing will have the advantage as we progress into next year. To stay relevant, however, they must make clear their impact on agility, cost savings, and social value – while at the same time aligning their wider offerings with the policy, spending priorities and aims of government departments.

Low & no-code

Another top 2023 trend that’s been gearing up over the past few years is the use of low and no-code tools. Digital transformation in the public sector comes in many forms – from automations and workflows, to mobile apps and eForms. However, technical capabilities within these organisations have often placed a barrier between these implementations – with many digital teams unable to support code-heavy projects.

Low and no-code development negates this issue. Intuitive graphic-led drag-and-drop studios enable the creation of digitisation without the need for advanced coding capabilities. This makes transformation so much more accessible, and in the spirit of doing more with less in 2023, low code is set to expand capabilities across the public sector exponentially.

Distributed architecture

Particularly in the public sector, hybrid cloud has been all the rage throughout 2022 – but in 2023 distributed architecture is set to take the cake.

The hype for hybrid was mostly centred around its ability to introduce organisations to the benefits of public cloud without abandoning existing infrastructure. 

The public sector acknowledges its need for multi cloud benefits, and many have already adopted cloud and Edge environments alongside on-premises architecture. 

Distributed architecture allows you to use public, private, and community clouds together at once, as if they were one environment. It brings environments together for a congruent, convenient, and interconnected experience. It unlocks and combines architectures, accelerating the call for platforms that can support this evolution.

End-to-end processing

Involving the combination of multiple technologies to support a process from start to finish, end-to-end digital transformation is arguably 2023’s biggest upcoming trend. As the public sector is becoming increasingly well-versed in digital transformation – utilising technologies like eForms, apps, workflows, web services and RPA – the industry is naturally progressing towards fully integrated projects that maximise the power of each.

Data and analytics

Vendors with ready-to-go and cost-effective answers for automation, hyper-automation and the personalisation of citizen-centric services will continue to be of value to the UK government. The need for timely data and insights to support critical decision-making through this time of economic turmoil will also continue to be a top priority. This will likely spur spending in data and analytics.

The circular economy

Achieving climate neutrality by 2050, preserving our natural environment, and strengthening our economic competitiveness requires a major shift to a circular economy. 

Government organisations will be increasingly looking at how to operate in a way that preserves resources, makes good business sense, and reduces environmental impact. There is an opportunity for IT vendors who can guide government organisations in this shift and build digital foundations – a digital backbone – to accelerate the journey to a resource-efficient economy.

Can a mum of 4 really achieve a successful work-life balance?


As a mum of two sets of twins, it’s safe to say my life is pretty hectic at times. From taking my children to appointments to navigating my career, there was a time when I was convinced I’d never be able to achieve a successful work-life balance. It’s no secret how many societal obstacles are still placed on women when they have children. And, at one point in time, I often felt like I’d have to choose between a thriving career and a healthy family life. 

But working at Talent has shown me that we truly CAN achieve both – and that ‘point in time’ of questioning what I can do is over. I can honestly say I feel more supported than ever, and am given all the flexibility I need to be the best mum I can be – without sacrificing my career goals or success. Work for the right place and you’ll never be left feeling forced to “choose”. 

Where it all began… 

I joined Talent in 2019 but originally started in the recruitment industry back in 2004. Honestly? The world of work was very different back then. 

The whole “8am til 8pm” routine was just expected of you, and working from home wasn’t an option at all. So, when I experienced what I faced next, this environment seemed pretty intimidating to come back to… 

I was pregnant with twins and my waters broke in the office – 10 weeks early! (Crazy, I know.) One day I was working full-time and the next I was on instant maternity leave without a lot of warning. I had every intention of coming back into recruitment but, after having my children over 2 months early, I just wasn’t sure how I was going to make it happen. 

Feeling the pressure

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel very intimidated by returning to the working environment I’d been so used to. As a new mum of twins, the expected long hours just weren’t going to be doable for me anymore. But the last thing I wanted to do was return to my career and end up failing – it was a real fear of mine. 

In the end, I decided to hand in my notice and spent the next 18 months being a full-time mum. After a while, though, I started getting itchy feet and really wanted to get back out there. I began holding gymnastics classes for the council (a pretty big change from recruitment that’s for sure!), and I loved it. But, I soon found out I was pregnant again… with another set of twins! 

So, all in all, I had four very young children to look after. This made the thought of getting back into recruitment seem even more impossible than before, and I’d almost completely given up on the idea. 

The light at the end of the tunnel

Throughout my journey leaving the industry and becoming a mum, I’d always kept in touch with James Davies (our director in Manchester) as we used to work together. He got in touch and offered me the chance to join Talent, and I accepted on the proviso of one essential thing: flexible working. With four young children, this was non-negotiable for me.

And that’s exactly what I was offered. I waited until my youngest twins turned two, and my Talent journey officially began. 

Giving a damn

“Give a damn” isn’t just a saying that Talent like to throw around – it’s a real value that’s genuinely put into action here. For me, it’s all about flexible working, empathy, and feeling like you’re truly cared about as a member of the team. And that’s exactly what Talent delivers! 

More time is focused on your skill set and what you can bring to the organisation (rather than how many hours you work or how long you’ve spent in the office). We’re all given a voice and there’s little emphasis on ‘status’ or hierarchy – which is a huge contrast to some other places I’ve worked. We’re all treated the same; we just have “different jobs”. 

Believing the stereotype?

As a working mum, I’m very aware of the unfair questions women often face. “Are you worried your career will slip once you have children?”; “Do you honestly think you’ll achieve a decent work-life balance when you have a family?” – it drives me crazy!

And the saddest part is that, for a long time, I genuinely believed the stereotype. After having two sets of twins so close together, it was almost ingrained in me to think that I’d never achieve a healthy balance if I went back into recruitment. One of my children is autistic too, and requires a higher level of interaction and different forms of care. I have a bunch of appointments I need to attend, and I genuinely believed that important family commitments would hinder my ability to be successful at work. 

I also experienced a serious setback at the end of 2019 – I went fully blind and had to take three months off. Even when I returned, I was having regular consultations for my eyes – on top of the other appointments already in my calendar. So, it’s pretty clear why I never thought achieving a healthy work-life balance was doable for me. 

Breaking from the pack

But, Talent showed me that it IS completely possible. I don’t need to request holiday to take my children to their appointments, and I have the flexibility to do everything I need to do for myself. No one ever questions my situation when I’m taking calls travelling in the car or heading to see the doctor – because they know I’m happy to work as hard as I can whenever I’m available, and I’m trusted to do my job and do it well. 

I can get everything done because I don’t feel any pressure NOT to be a mum. I don’t have to hide it or do anything behind closed doors. I’m actively supported by my team and Talent as a whole, with room to breathe instead of feeling stressed. 

Identify what you want for yourself – and don’t forget to BE yourself!

I’m often asked what my advice would be for young new starters coming into recruitment right now – many of which are likely to start families of their own one day. And honestly? It’s very difficult for me to pinpoint specific things because I didn’t have any strong workplace role models when I joined recruitment. 

Nobody I worked with had family commitments, which skewed my perception into thinking it’s one or the other: having children or having a successful career. That is clearly NOT the case, provided you’re working for a good organisation where you’re supported as much as possible. 

To be successful (not just in recruitment, but in general), it’s all about knowing what you want for yourself and being proactive in achieving it. Today’s world of work is a lot more flexible than it ever used to be – and it’s important you’re not afraid to ask for flexibility if you know it’s something you need. 

But, more importantly, just be yourself! (I know it sounds cliché, but it’s SO true.) When I first started in recruitment over 10 years ago, I was taught to talk a certain way, dress a certain way, write an email a certain way… It felt like a lot of pressure, and I found the way I presented myself at work was totally different to how I acted at home. And, in my opinion, that’s a really bad thing. 

There’s no denying it’s important to be professional but, if you’re in a working environment where you feel pressured to act like a completely different person, you’re in the wrong organisation. I’ve always felt comfortable to be 100% me at Talent – and that really counts for a lot in my book. 

Don’t try too hard to be someone else, and you can’t go far wrong. 

Moving forward

There’s no denying the progress we’ve made as a society. But, in my opinion, there’s still a way to go if we want to beat the stereotypes mums can sometimes come up against. I feel very lucky to work for such a supportive organisation and I’m looking forward to many more years with Talent – and continuing to enjoy motherhood to the full!

Demanding employment skills in the German market – Top 5 employment skills


Demanding employment skills in the German market

Experts in the field of team training and development, as well as HR managers, agree that enhanced and new employee qualifications will be required in the future. No matter if you’re working from home, as a freelancer or in a company: we should and are able to qualify for digitally-oriented jobs in order to keep up with the challenges of the competition and on the market. The advanced technology and IT knowledge will be in high demand that goes in hand with professional, analytical and practical excellence. Nick van Dam, the Dutch learning expert lists the most important skills, no matter in what industry you’re working, these are:  

1. High Emotional Intelligence and Empathy:

Having emotional intelligence means understanding colleagues both verbally and non-verbally, creating genuine connections. Empathy, the ability to feel what others feel, builds trust and cooperation, fostering a harmonious work environment.

2. Teamwork and Communication:

Effective teamwork demands coordination and clear communication. Working seamlessly within a team, sharing ideas openly, and respecting diverse viewpoints are fundamental to achieving collective goals.

3. People Management and Collaboration:

People management extends beyond your immediate team. It involves collaborating effectively both internally and externally, building relationships, and managing contacts within and outside the company. Adept interpersonal skills can enhance professional networks and open doors to opportunities.

4. Negotiation Skills:

In the face of challenges, negotiation skills are invaluable. Whether dealing with internal stakeholders, clients, or customers, the ability to negotiate, especially in stressful situations, can lead to mutually beneficial outcomes and long-term partnerships.

5. Thinking Outside the Box:

The modern workplace thrives on innovation. Thinking outside the box, fueled by curiosity and a willingness to explore new perspectives, drives creativity. Embracing unconventional approaches can lead to groundbreaking solutions and fresh ideas.

With these soft skills, you’re having the most important employment skills for the future since the transformation is not only about technology. It is also social and cultural transformation that affects the ways we think, work, and learn.  
Soft skills such as flexibility and an open mind will help you as these skills make it easier to deal with change and to adjust to new situations really fast.

Regarding the skills for new technologies, long-term learning is key. For example, coding will be a demanding skill, however, there are even more skills to obtain depending on the specific tech job. The most important fact is that everyone can continue their education at any time, no matter what sector we are talking about. If it is difficult to afford such training or schools, the state also supports such developments with appropriate funding. If this still no option, it is possible to collect your knowledge step by step with free videos on the internet and a lot of practice.

‘Neurodiversity is a superpower’ – My Neurodiversity Journey


Proud to be neurodiverse

After being diagnosed with dyslexia and dyspraxia from the age of nine (and ADHD later down the line), it’s safe to say I’ve experienced my fair share of obstacles. But I’m proud to be neurodiverse – and I want to showcase that despite what society might tell you, there are no limits to achieving success both in and out of the workplace.

I’m super passionate about eliminating the stigma and changing the landscape of how neurodiversity is perceived, empowering people like myself to stop viewing themselves as having disabilities – and see their differences as special powers instead. There are so many unique qualities that people like myself can bring to the table; and it’s a shame they’re still often overlooked in certain working environments.

So, I wanted to share a little bit about my own personal experiences from childhood and beyond, and share key insights on how managers can best support their employees . And yes, I did have some help writing this blog – and that’s totally ok. If there’s one piece of advice I’d start with, it’s NEVER be afraid to ask for help if you need it. (And if you’re in a workplace where you feel uncomfortable or simply unable to reach out, that’s a telltale sign you’re not working somewhere that’s right for you…)

Back to the beginning

I was diagnosed with dyslexia, dyspraxia and ADHD at a young age. Back then, people were nowhere near as open about these things as we are now – so education on these matters wasn’t brilliant and the stigma was pretty huge.

These diagnoses were partly down to the fact I never learnt how to crawl as a young child. My coordination was pretty terrible and, by the age of 10, I still couldn’t catch a ball. I had to go to physio to learn how to crawl (at the time I felt embarrassed, but it was necessary to get my coordination up to where it needed to be). It all paid off and I became really good at squash, winning the county championships when I was 14! This was a big boost for me and really helped my coordination in the long run.

Back to age 10 again, I had to start using a laptop for everything at school as my writing skills were poor. This was WAY before the time laptops were seen as cool, and I was picked on – made to feel like I was different from the other kids. I also had to wear John Lennon-style red glasses to help with my reading, which just added to that feeling of ‘not being like everyone else’. It shouldn’t have mattered but, back then, it was seen as a big deal.

I was fortunate that my parents were very supportive and my mother was a headteacher. She was very in-the-know about all of these things. In fact, it was my mum who recognised I needed a certain colour to help me read better (hence the groovy red glasses!).

Turning obstacles into strengths

Aside from the other kids at school not being particularly friendly towards my laptop and groovy glasses, I unfortunately experienced obstacles from my teachers. I got told during parents’ evening around age 14 that I’d never get to university or any other form of higher education. This created a huge mental block for me and I wasn’t even an adult yet!

My writing skills were poor as a child and they still are to this day. Written communication has always been a big obstacle for me and many saw this as a weakness early on. But, I quickly found ways to turn this into a strength. Instead of spending hours struggling to write emails, I had no issue just picking up the phone instead – something a lot of people are often quite apprehensive of, hiding behind emails as a safety blanket.

This ability to happily pick up the phone and chat to anyone helped me build better and more genuine relationships with people. This is a huge plus when working in recruitment, and allowed me to progress pretty quickly.

Stop focusing on what people can’t do

Despite the obstacles I’ve faced, I’m definitely not embarrassed and I think neurodiversity positively defines me in a lot of ways. I’m proud of it! My two daughters are also similar to me, and my experiences allow me to support them and provide a greater degree of empathy.

Which leads me to say that instead of focusing on what people can’t do, look at what they can do instead. Stop seeing differences as weaknesses and look at how they can be viewed as strengths.

I was pretty lucky with most of my managers,  as they recognised that for every perceived ‘weakness’ I had, there were a bunch of other strengths I had to offer. Rather than focusing on my difficulties with writing, they focused on how great my verbal communication was. I had zero issues with picking up the phone and making call after call to whoever – whereas a lot of people didn’t have the confidence to do that. But I did.

Are you truly inclusive?

If you’re a hiring manager, I think it’s so important to evaluate your testing and interview processes. For example, when I first got into recruitment, I was lucky my boss at the time took a chance on me because there was no way I’d have got through the written assessments! It’s a shame I feel ‘lucky’ to have had a manager who understood and took my differences into account. Surely everyone should receive support like this?

We just need to be more aware and ask things like “is my current hiring process ruling people out?”, “Am I excluding people without even realising it?”. Later in my career when I was the one interviewing people, I’d often think ‘wow, I’m expected to put people through tests I would have never got through myself’. I soon realised that was something that really needed to change.

Putting barriers (i.e. tests that aren’t 100% necessary) in place for the sake of it is pointless. You may be excluding people who are brilliant in other ways but, because they’re not totally compatible with the current processes you’re using, you could be losing out on someone who’s great.

It’s not all bad!

Despite the changes that still need to be made, there are notable positive movements going on in the neurodiversity space. For example, LinkedIn recently added ‘dyslexic thinking’ as a profile skill which was amazing to see. The aim was to recognise the problem-solving and creative skills that people with dyslexia are able to bring to work.

But for real change to come about, we need to alter the language we’re using. Instead of thinking “I’ve got this, it’s a disability”, we should be seeing these diagnoses as powers that can help us in a bunch of different ways. I think if we approached neurodiversity with a more positive spin, it’d massively reduce the stigma and help people feel more at ease speaking up and asking for help.

If you want to get the best out of your staff and build a truly inclusive culture, you need to create an environment where people feel comfortable to say “I’m struggling, I can’t do this”. Your people will work a lot harder if they feel they can open up and ask for help if they need it.

I feel lucky to work for a company that supports me in any way I need – but not every company is like Talent (unfortunately!). There’s still a way to go in reducing the unfair stigma associated with neurodiversity, but I think there are some positive steps being taken.