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Government as a Platform notification service implemented

The new Government as a Platform digital programme has reached its next stage after GOV.UK Notify was launched in private beta on Tuesday.

The service will be used to issue updates on student loans, lasting power of attorney, passports, voter registration, and the digital marketplace for small and medium sized businesses.

GOV.UK Verify, another pillar of the platform which is used to verify members of the public’s identification, was implemented in May.

Ben Gummer, minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, said: “Whether you are a parent applying for a passport, a student checking your finances, or a business owner seeking to work on government contracts – we want to make it as easy as possible for you.

“In GOV.UK Notify, we have developed an impressive, cost-saving product that can be used across any government department for lots of different services – making it easier for the public to interact with government and keep track of their applications and requests.”

Gummer transferred from the Department of Health to the Cabinet Office as part of the recent Cabinet reshuffle.

Matt Hancock, his predecessor and a key supporter of government digital services, is now minister for digital policy at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

GOV.UK Notify is intended to save money and time for both government and the public by allowing communications to be sent by text, e-mail and post instead of on the phone.

The Public Accounts Committee found yesterday that HMRC is planning to cut large numbers of staff as part of an increased reliance on digital services, despite warnings that large numbers of customers still prefer to use the phone.

A recent report found that three-quarters of civil servants admitted they do not fully understand the £450m Government as a Platform platform.

Socitm has also called for it to be extended to local government.

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