The Society of IT Managers (Socitm) has criticised the government's assessment of local authorities for failing to explain the role of technology in delivering best practice for council services.
In a report published last week, called Making a Difference, Socitm said that local authorities with good IT strategies were more likely to do well in the government's Comprehensive Performance Assessment (CPA) process.
The group hit out at an Audit Commission report published in December, Patterns for Improvement, saying that it lacked adequate stress on how IT can help councils do better.
"In the light of these findings it is disappointing that Patterns for Improvement makes scant mention of technology as one of the key building blocks for the improvement of council services," said Martin Greenwood, programme manager at Socitm.
Socitm's analysis looked at 40 of the 149 authorities which have received CPA results, and inspected their ICT Best Value reviews.
The findings imply that services will improve as the contribution of IT increases.
"An ICT service that is above par will almost always achieve at least a fair CPA rating, if not an excellent or good one," said the report.
Ian Kearns, head of the digital society programme at independent think-tank the Institute for Public Policy Research, added: "The government is not good at demonstrating how it uses IT to improve services.
"It is important that we can discuss the role of technology in the core strategies and objectives of local authorities."
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