Devon County Council has selected Unit4 and Embridge Consulting to digitise its organisation, data and services with Unit4 ERP, encompassing finance, procurement, and financial planning and analysis (FP&A).
The council’s Unit4 platform will also include integrated software from some of the supplier partners: Proactis, which delivers invoice process automation, and HeyCentric, an avowedly secure payment system.
Devon County Council is the largest local authority in Southwest England. It’s responsible for adult social care, education and families, roads and transport, planning and development, waste and recycling, and libraries and heritage.
Yet, by its own account, its financial system, which has been in place for 30 years, increasingly relied on “add-on technology” and did not provide an integrated user experience.
The council is seeking to invest in a modern, cloud-based system to improve people’s work and enhance financial insight.
Angie Sinclair, director of finance and public value at Devon County Council, said, in support of the local authority’s technology choice: “The council wanted to work with a market leader with a proven track record in – and a commitment to – the UK local government sector.
“The collaborative approach from Unit4 and Embridge Consulting, which focuses on best practice utilising high-quality integrated ERP solutions, combined with their experience in the Public Sector, was integral to our decision making.”
With the implementation of the new digital platform, it’s expected that the council will be able to leverage efficiencies through improved operational performance with budget management, improved monitoring of the financial health of the council and improved forecasting.
“Devon County Council is a leading authority within the UK and, together with Embridge Consulting, we are pleased to support this part of Devon County Council’s transformation journey,” said James Arvin, director at Unit4.
“Our wealth of experience gained in working with local government means that we understand its nuances,” he said. “As a result, we have built tailored solutions which provide the functionality, agility and efficiency needed to combat the complexity of that environment. This recent decision from Devon County Council further cements our market-leading position in the sector.”
Unit4 and Embridge Consulting have worked together in the past to support council-wide transformation programmes, including in Surrey County Council, Cherwell District Council and North Lincolnshire Council.
Emma O’Brien, CEO of Embridge Consulting, said: “Our track record of supporting significant and successful finance transformation programmes across UK local government means that we can bring industry expertise and insight to Devon with equal focus on the people, process and technology change that is essential to success.”
St Helens Borough Council is another to have selected Unit4 enterprise applications technologies to advance its digital transformation plans. Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils, as well as Norwich City Council, are also Unit4 customers.
These county councils are said by Unit4 to have benefited from modern, cloud-based, enterprise software, and streamlined implementation based on local government practice, including workflows that automate processes and provide real-time reporting.