GovTech Catalyst: relevant technology and service design standards

All projects funded by the GovTech Catalyst (GTC) should be designed to meet existing cross-government technology and service design standards.

Central government departments must include GovTech Catalyst (GTC) projects in their digital and technology spend control pipelines.

It’s the challenge owner’s responsibility to make sure suppliers follow these standards.

Role of the GovTech Catalyst team

The GovTech Catalyst team is responsible for making sure GovTech Fund money is usefully spent.

They do this by:

  • making sure only the challenges with greatest chance of success are selected
  • helping challenge owners hone their challenge before the competition
  • providing expert service design, technical and project management support to challenge owners and suppliers throughout the GovTech Catalyst lifecycle
  • evaluating projects throughout the GovTech Catalyst lifecycle
  • only permitting challenges with a high chance of success to progress to phase 2
  • learning from each challenge how government can get better at low risk, early stage innovation procurement

Evaluation cycle

Challenges are assessed against the GovTech criteria at:

  • challenge selection
  • end of phase 1 and possible progression to phase 2
  • end of phase 2

Challenges are evaluated using cross-government standards at:

  • phase 1 midpoint
  • end of phase 1 and possible progression to phase 2
  • phase 2 supplier selection
  • phase 2 midpoint
  • end of phase 2

Challenges are also assessed against the original goals for the challenge at:

  • end of phase 1 and possible progression to phase 2
  • end of phase 2

End of phase 1 and decision to progress to phase 2

The GovTech Catalyst team evaluates challenges at the end of phase 1 based on:

  • suppliers’ end of phase 1 reports
  • supplier presentations at the end of phase 1 progression workshop
  • a panel discussion with the challenge owner at the progression workshop

Challenges must still meet the GovTech Catalyst selection criteria at the end of phase 1 to progress to phase 2.

Whether a phase 1 project proceeds to phase 2 depends on:

  • if suppliers met the challenge owner’s goals for phase 1
  • how closely the challenge owner followed existing standards and guidance in their project design, priorities and management

Challenges that no longer qualify for the GovTech Catalyst are not eligible for phase 2.

GovTech Catalyst criteria

These criteria are used to score challenges submitted to the Govtech Catalyst.

  • the challenge describes an important public sector problem which could result in a new digital solution from business with a significant improvement in efficiency, policy or cost reduction for the public body
  • demonstration of evidenced, clear user needs within the scope of public policy
  • understanding of the market, including approaches that have been tried in the past, in order to demonstrate the opportunity for innovation
  • demonstration of an empowered challenge owner team with sufficient time, money and people available to invest in the solution and plans to procure the final product

Other relevant cross-government standards and guidance

The end of phase 1 progression workshop explores how challenge owners have met the alpha assessment criteria for the following Service Standard and Technology Code of Practice points.

User needs are assessed against:

The team is assessed against:

Technology, security and privacy are assessed against:

Design and content are assessed against:

GTC assessors may also consider these standards:

Published 15 February 2019