The DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) has become a sponsor of Tech Hub Swansea, which will see the DVLA working with local businesses, suppliers, customers and universities to design and develop digital services over a two-year programme.

The DVLA said: "The overall aim is to reduce the Agency’s reliance on large IT suppliers for all of our services and to reduce operating costs." The initiative was officially launched in Swansea last week (Friday) by Mike Bracken, the head of the Government Digital Service.

Big Ben and Parliament
Big Ben and Parliament

Partnering with TechHub, says the Swansea-based DVLA, is another part of its strategy to develop and attract digital talent. The DVLA will become part of a network that will share resources, knowledge, experience and workspace.

"This is a completely new way for a government agency to harness the skills and knowledge in the local tech community, which will assist in the provision of excellent digital services," said the DVLA.

The DVLA will take space at the TechHub offices in Swansea, which are currently home to six technology start-up companies. It says it will take advantage of the digital skills of graduates and tech start-up gurus to improve the services it provides to the public.

As well as upskilling its own staff, the DVLA says it will share its knowledge and experience to mentor these start-ups in their projects, and will be able to offer placements and projects to undergraduates.

Swansea TechHub was co-founded by Adam Curtis, Paul Harwood and Matt Warren, three local software company entrepreneurs whose ambition is to make Swansea a target area for new technology businesses.

Earlier this year, the government backed a move by the DVLA to migrate to a new "open service" core IT platform, to support wider digital services at the organisation.