Understanding the role that a local authority could - and should - play in a connectivity deployment project is key to success, for the initial roll-out and beyond.
Ultimately, for strategic visions to be realised, the right teams need to be in place, with clear responsibility for delivery and ongoing management formally incorporated into job roles. Cross-departmental collaboration is a must and changes to organisational structures may be required to facilitate a shift to a "digital first" local authority. So too is developing the skills required to understand the capabilities of 5G, identify the potential partners required, appreciate the commercial drivers and data needs of those partners, and the ability to negotiate and successfully work with industry.
“Deploying digital is a science; enabling it is an art”
John Houston, Essex & Herts Digital Innovation Zone Strategic Lead
New connectivity solutions must also be considered within the broader context of a local authority's strategy and vision, and this extends beyond digital. For instance, how does a 5G deployment align with the green agenda and net zero targets, and how does your use of data align with your broader data governance policies? And of course, execution will likely extend beyond the remit of the local authority, so efforts need to be effectively coordinated across all cross-organisational teams, partnerships and stakeholders.
Tackling all of these elements can seem daunting. That's why we've gathered insights from the local authorities and private sector organisations who have deployed 5G in places, to share their front line learnings.