Council shortlisted for Government awards

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Published Date: 

31 May 2017 - 11:33

Argyll and Bute Council has been nominated for two Scottish Government awards for excellence in information and computer technology.

It has been shortlisted in two categories in the annual Connect ICT Awards, which are open to public sector organisations.

They are in the ‘Connect Citizen’ and ‘Connect Cloud’ categories.

Winners will be announced in Edinburgh on 21 June.

The council’s Head of Customer and Support Services, Judy Orr, said: “It’s a real achievement to be shortlisted in two separate categories in these prestigious national awards.

“It reflects the changes the Council has made over the past year to improve its ICT and customer service systems.

“This has transformed the efficiency of our services and also the customer experience by offering new services such as webchat and Facebook messaging, plus greater self-service through new online forms and automated phone systems with sophisticated voice-recognition technology for services such as making payments.

“The enhancements have made a huge difference to our service delivery, directly benefiting local residents.

“People can now influence how we provide our services by being able to take part in more online consultations and provide immediate feedback through automated satisfaction surveys.

“Customers are also informed quickly of service disruptions through our integrated notification service and have access to a wide and growing range of 24/7 information, request and payment digital resources.

“It’s great this change from more basic customer contact to full digital customer engagement has been recognised at a national level by the Scottish Government and rewarded with our inclusion on the shortlist.”

The Council has been included on the Connect Cloud Adoption Award shortlist for its work to transfer its customer services software systems to ‘the cloud’ over the past year. This gives greater protection against system outages as the systems have full backup and continual system upgrades so new features and functionality are always being introduced.

It is in the running for the Connect Citizen Award after upgrading technology to improve the way the public deals with the council.

For Connect Citizen, the Council is competing with Aberdeenshire Council, the Boundary Commission for Scotland, Renfrewshire Council and the Improvement Service.

The other shortlisted organisations for Connect Cloud are NHS Education for Scotland and Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.
Winners will be revealed at an awards night at Our Dynamic Earth following the 2017 Connect Holyrood conference.