Civil service uses ECDL to meet the needs of UK citizens and businesses

20 May 2003

As part of its drive to deliver services electronically by 2005, the Cabinet Office is undertaking a training initiative in conjunction with BCS to offer the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) qualification in computer competency to staff in the Civil Service.

Using IT to meet the needs of citizens and businesses was one of the five key commitments in the Modernising Government White Paper. ECDL was introduced to train and develop staff to ensure this aim was met.

Ruth Kirby, head of Central Government National Training Organisation Secretariat (CGNTO), explains, 'In selecting ECDL the Cabinet Office was seeking a programme that spanned the range of basic user skills and because ECDL is based on e-learning principles, users can utilise their new skills as they learn.'

A framework agreement has been devised with BCS which covers a wide range of options to help any government departments, agencies and Non Departmental Public Bodies (NDPB) listed in the Civil Service Yearbook wishing to implement ECDL into their own training and qualification strategy.

Each department has the option of offering ECDL and the decision to implement it will depend on their individual business needs and may vary for different groups of staff. In addition, the Central Government National Training Organisation (CGNTO) is keen to promote the use of training which leads to a formal qualification and, being internationally recognised, ECDL is a suitable programme to offer.

ECDL UK director Pete Bayley commented, 'The CGNTO's decision to implement ECDL reflects the way in which the qualification has been established within the public sector as being key to delivering this vital element of e-government. Already both the NHS and the Ministry of Defence have invested significant funds in encouraging employees to gain ECDL certification.'

For further information about the benefits of ECDL, please visit the ECDL section where a number of case-studies can be accessed. Alternatively, please call +44 (0) 1793 417424.

For further information please contact the BCS Press Office.