February 24, 2010 -- Awards continue to be heaped on Local Authorities using Astun Technology’s iShare data integration and publishing platform. At the recent eGovernment Awards held at the Guildhall in London, South Tyneside Council won the award for ‘Local e-government excellence - Take-up & usage growth’. In 2009 three iShare sites were selected for the top twenty in the SOCITM ‘Better Connected’ survey. At the Exemplar Awards for Transformational Government, Exeter City Council and Monmouthshire County Council were both Highly Commended in their categories.
People are busy and increasingly want to self-serve via the web rather than pick up a phone. When South Tyneside Council’s GovMetric stats showed that there were low levels of customer satisfaction associated with its waste and recycling pages it redesigned the pages to make them more prominent and user friendly and integrated the doorstep collections dates into the ‘My South Tyneside’ postcode search which is facilitated by iShare.
A local waste and recycling marketing campaign ensued with the website promoted heavily. The results were dramatic. In October 2008 92% of waste and recycling enquiries were phone based with just 8% via the web, by April 2009 there had been considerable channel shift with 33% by phone and 67% of enquiries made online. The result is a real saving in transaction costs and impressive performance in terms of the National Indicator NI14 - Avoidable Contact.
The iShare platform enables Councils to pull information from their back office systems, transforms it and publishes it in a variety of ways. Externally iShare enables citizens to search for information relevant to where they live such as the nearest school or doctor’s surgery, the date of the next bin collection or the details of a nearby planning application. Citizens can even sign up to a rich email alert service and avoid the website entirely. The platform can also be used internally to integrate with CRM systems to log the precise location of incidents on maps or across the whole authority with a simple to use search and mapping tool.
“We are delighted that iShare continues to be right at the heart of our customers’ efforts to improve service delivery and helping them to win awards too!” said Mike Saunt, Managing Director of Astun Technology. “iShare is all about how we can help Councils to communicate and deliver their services more effectively. It joins up data from different service delivery systems and makes it available to all so that it can be put to good use, whether its locating an abandoned car on a map or publishing a council newsletter. Development has always been client led and we have been genuinely inspired by where they are taking us,” continued Saunt.