Good high-speed broadband is essential for businesses and consumers to engage successfully in the digital economy. The Superfast Broadband Programme will have ensured superfast broadband coverage (speeds over 24Mbps) for 95% of UK premises by the end of December and it is expected to extend coverage further beyond that to around 97% by 2020. Over 1.5% of this additional coverage is already contracted and more will be delivered through new procurements in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as well as areas of England. As Programme Director you will need to ensure that these procurements are completed successfully and that delivery is managed tightly with local authorities and the devolved administrations to ensure value for money and successful closure of each contract. You will also need to manage the Better Broadband Scheme which provides support for basic broadband technologies for premises which cannot currently obtain speeds of at least 2Mbps.
You will also be DCMS Programme Director for the 700MHz spectrum clearance programme. Radio spectrum is used for a wide variety of communications and other uses, particularly wireless telephony (i.e. mobile voice and data services), Wi-Fi and media broadcasting. Only one service can use a particular set of radio frequencies in the same place and time - other signals lead to interference between the two services. The right to use sets of radio frequencies ("bands" of the radio spectrum) is therefore a finite resource.
As Programme Director, your role will be to ensure the successful delivery of the £600m Major Project to clear radio spectrum at 700-790 MHz. The infrastructure works for this programme are being undertaken by the digital television industry under the supervision of Ofcom. You will need to provide government oversight and assurance as well as manage a programme of support for television viewers to ensure they do not lose access to TV services. You will also need to ensure the Programme Makers and Special Events (PMSE) sector, who also currently use the 700MHz spectrum, are given appropriate support under a help scheme managed by Ofcom. Clearance is scheduled to be completed by May 2020.