And it’s goodbye from me

And it’s goodbye from me

At the end of October I am leaving Welsh Local Government Digital after almost 2 years. I will be taking up a new role in Digital Health and Care Wales (DHCW), supporting our NHS in Wales to deliver better services by improving the role that digital plays. I am truly excited about this new challenge and I hope that my skills and experience will add to the already excellent team that DHCW are growing across Wales.

That said, I am deeply sorry to leave this role. It remains the ‘best job in Wales’ and I am sure that the next incumbent will love it as much as I have. The focus on citizen-facing services and working with teams to improve their skills is still paramount. With the increasing struggles faced by many during this winter I can see a greater demand on digital coming to the forefront. Problem-solving, inclusivity and service delivery will be a clear focus and something that I’m sure all authorities are already dealing with. And with the colder weather coming – it’s about to get even tougher.

The dedication I have witnessed across teams in Wales is inspiring. My own team here at WLGA has never failed to make me proud, and by extension, all of you who have worked with us, trained with us and moaned with us feel like part of the team too. Hopefully these relationships will continue to go from strength to strength and the digital ecosystem in local gov will develop further.

As you all know there is still a lot to do. We have huge challenges around recruitment and retention in digital, data and tech roles. This has hindered some of our work and should not be underappreciated as a problem. CDPS are kicking off the Attract Recruit and Retain workstream which this team will be heavily engaged with. The aim is that all public sector organisations in Wales have a much stronger offering for new recruits and we can attract the world class talent that we really need.

I will watch from the sidelines as the Transformation Fund projects are developed. I’ll read the blogposts and maybe pop into the odd show and tell. These projects are all excellent examples of problems we need to solve in local gov. They were clearly articulated by the submission teams. If you want to get involved, you still can. If you have something to offer any of the projects then do get in touch, you can find the contact details in our blog post announcing the projects that have received funding. The wider we can reach the more benefit we will get from the funding and the effort everyone is putting in.

And the team is currently sorting out more training for everyone. Please take advantage of it. It’s excellent quality, but more than that you’ll see people on the courses who are doing the same things you are. Grow your informal networks and learn who you can turn to and lean on – we all need friends in the digital world.

And finally, please do keep in touch – my digital network is something I cherish greatly. Feel free to follow me on Twitter @samhallwales for retweets of interesting digital nuggets, commentary on life in general… and pictures of dogs. And I’m on LinkedIn for more work related contact or comment. With my new role I’m sure there will be plenty of opportunities to work together on future community health and care digital projects and I look forward to that.

Diolch i bawb – it’s been a blast.


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