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Companies & products 13 Feb 2015



Newcastle provides launch pad for Advanced Workspace access management

Newcastle City Council has begun to use an access management portal developed in a partnership with Advanced Business Solutions. Named Advanced Workspace, it is integrated with the council's back office applications that include other Advanced applications, e5 financial management, Collaborative Planning budget management and SAP HR and payroll.

The portal provides access to the applications through a single web page with a single sign-on, eliminating the need to launch and operate them separately. An integrated data feed provides a clear view of the financial tasks and notifications.

Dean Dickinson, managing director of Advanced Business Solutions (Public Sector & Enterprise), said: "Advanced Workspace significantly improves efficiency by providing a consolidated window into an organisation's entire financial management suite, which can be managed via a single sign-on. This removes the need to access underlying applications and reduces email traffic as task alerts are all available in one easily accessible list."

Advanced Business Solutions:

Pictured: Newcastle by Night by 96tommy is licensed under CC BY 2.0


Northern Ireland midwives get medicine management tool

Midwives and pharmacists in Northern Ireland have helped to develop an e-learning tool to support the former group in supplying and administering medicines.

Midwives and Medicines (NI) 2014 has been made available through the Northern Ireland Practice and Education Council for Nursing and Midwifery (NIPEC), which managed the project, and the HSC eLearning Centre. It aims to provide midwives with up to date information through learning scenarios, self-assessments, links to a list of medicines commonly used in maternity care, and links to legislation and other supporting documentation.

Chief nursing officer Charlotte McArdle said: "Despite the legislation, there has been confusion around midwives' responsibilities in relation to the supply and administration of medicines, in particular around midwives' exemptions, patient group directions and relevant statutory legislation.

"I know that this innovative e-learning will be a great resource for midwives and will aid clarity and a better understanding of their responsibilities when administering and supplying medicines in the sphere of midwifery practice."

Midwives and Medicines (NI) 2014:

Brighton extends PayByPhone service

Brighton & Hove City Council has pushed out its PayByPhone service from the seafront to on-street parking bays around the city, claiming that more than 70,000 residents, visitors and businesses have now registered.

It has also introduced an alternative option for drivers who want to pay by cash, enabling them to use PayPoint shops for the same price as using the pay and display machine. They provide their vehicle's registration number and the code of the parking bay, pay for as long as they need and can receive change - which is not possible through the machines.

The council is currently running a trial to assess the impact of the PayPoint shops, with a view to reducing the number of machines.


Dudley hits 1,000 downloads for reporting app

Dudley Council has claimed that usage of its mobile app for reporting environmental problems is gathering momentum, with the number of downloads having recently passed 1,000.

The app is available on iOS and Android, and makes it possible to report issues such as fly tipping, potholes and faulty streetlights. Since its launch in November 2014 as part of the LookingLocal programme, more than 550 street issues and 250 housing repairs have been reported.


Fujitsu and Intel launch schools IT programme

Fujitsu and Intel have set up an Education Ambassador Programme, aligned with the Education Technology Action Group's objectives, to promote the use of digital technology in schools, further and higher education, and for special educational needs. Various educational institutions have joined as partners, including University Campus Suffolk and the National Autistic Society.

Ash Merchant, head of education UK & Ireland, Fujitsu. "A recent survey by Fujitsu revealed that around a fifth (22%) of consumers believe that digital education should be part of the modern school curriculum, highlighting a real need to see investment at the beginning of the digital journey. Schools, colleges and universities will play a crucial part - and Fujitsu is committed to enabling this move."

The companies will set up innovation hubs at institutions that become ambassadors, and provide infrastructure support. The first has been launched at UTC Reading, which will work with Fujitsu on a number of projects. These include training primary school teachers in coding, launching a social media training programme, and developing hardware and cyber security projects to go towards BTEC qualifications.

Among the other institutions that have signed up so far are Brunel University, Derby College, Thames Valley School and the National Autistic Society.

More on


Community interest company to focus on NHS open source

IMS MAXIMS has given the open source cause in the NHS a push with the foundation of a community of interest company (CIC) to guide the development of a patient record system.

Named openMAXIMS, it has signed up three NHS trusts - Taunton and Somerset, St Helens and Knowsley and Blackpool - as initial members. Malcolm Senior, IT director at Taunton, said: "In some ways we are going back to the days when NHS clinicians worked alongside NHS developers to enhance existing systems and products to maximise the clinical benefits available."

The CIC will act as the custodian of the source code for the product, which was released in June last year, and help other trusts looking to use the software.


Worcestershire County Council has launched a website for families of children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) using the LookingLocal MyLocalOffer platform.

It provides advice on relevant council services, along with a search function for what is available from other organisations such as charities and support groups. It leads to video and audio content, online forums and chatrooms.

Councillor Liz Eyre, Worcestershire's cabinet member for children and families, said: "The approach allowed us to plug our website into the LookingLocal solution, add related NHS content and create a valuable tool informed by the needs of parents and young people."


BT runs SME competition on ideas for government

BT has announced a competition for small and medium enterprises to produce ideas for new uses of technology in the delivery of public services.

The finalists will be invited to present their proposals to a panel of BT, the Cabinet Office and TechHub, which will decide on the winner and two runners-up. The first prize is £15,000 and six months support from BT to develop a product or service and six month's membership of TechHub's innovation space, while the runners-up will each receive £7,500.

Details are on


Mobile operator O has updated its No.10 tariff for public and third sector bodies to use its 4G network. It is offering £100 connection credit to offset against the purchase of a new tablet, combined with the £10 per month charge and 5GB per user per month data limit.

The tariff is available under Lot 6 of the PSN Services Framework as a direct award option.

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