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In brief …. 18 September 2015



In brief …. 18 September 2015

Majority would share device data with GP

Most UK adults would be happy to shared data from wearable devices with their GP, according to research by management consultancy KPMG.

Almost three-quarters (74%) from a survey of 1,000 people said they would agree to share data with a wearable health monitoring device with their family doctor, but only 7% would share it with their employer.

There was also significant support of 48% for adding patient records to a national database for medical practitioners, and 46% said they would agree for their records to be shared anonymously for medical research.


GOV.UK team looks at Welsh content

The Government Digital Service and the Wales Office are carrying out research on how to provide Welsh language content to the GOV.UK website.

A user research blogpost says that qualitative research was conducted earlier this year, aimed at understanding why Welsh speakers choose to use English when interacting online with government. It found that people want to stay in the Welsh version, but need assistance with particular words and switch backwards and forwards with the English version. As a result, they want fewer but better services in ‘plain Welsh’.

The team is now prioritising services to for translation into Welsh, but says that longer term it needs to design content in the language, taking an iterative, user-centred approach. This is aimed at ensuring the usability and clarity of Welsh content on GOV.UK.


DVLA tests V5C on Demand

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has kicked off a four week pilot of its V5C on Demand service.

It is working with a number of volunteer companies on the service, which will make the V5C document – which companies the registered owner of the vehicle – available through the View Vehicle Record service. Fleet companies that opt in will be able to obtain the document online rather than having a paper version sent to them.

A DVLA digital blogpost said that new companies will join the scheme over the coming weeks.


Scotland relaunches business portal

The Scottish Government has closed the Scottish Business Portal and opened a new service within its recently launched website.

A Scottish Government Digital blog says that traffic from the old portal’s URL is now being redirected to the new service, and that it includes improvements to one of its major features, the business rates calculator.

This has been optimised for tablet and mobile use, displays ‘need to know’ information upfront, does not lose navigation or content if the ‘back’ button is used, allow search results to emailed, and provide direct access to relevant council website pages.

The blog says that over the coming weeks the team behind the portal will focus on the experience of business users to influence a new content strategy, and is working with partners such as the UK Government Digital Service.


West Midlands Police takes ANPR wireless

West Midlands Police has deployed a dedicated mobile data platform for automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) as part of its traffic management strategy.

The service has worked with machine-to-machine managed service provider Wireless Logic to install the new infrastructure, which the company says replaces a collection of virtual private networks that had been difficult to manage.

Jon-Paul Clarke, business development director at Wireless Logic, said: “Initially, some 70 mobile camera sites were connected this way with cost cutting and efficiency credentials soon established, before the technology was rolled out more broadly to multiple fixed and mobile units. Being able to use several mobile networks across the one platform provides much needed flexibility and scalability, especially when cameras need to be redeployed quickly in response to emerging trouble hot spots.”


Socitm launches Women in IT initiative

Socitm, the association for IT and digital professionals in local public services, is launching an initiative to support women in the sector and promote their advancement.

The initiative will be launched on 23 September at a half-day event sponsored by Socitm Gold partner Canon and taking place at The View, its conference venue in London EC4.

Socitm president Nadira Hussain said: ‘Socitm is a great platform for creating a network through which the interests and visibility of women can be advanced in both public and private sectors. Events like this will start improving the visibility of women both within the Society and more widely and to provide support and encouragement for them to progress their careers.

“Their visible success will encourage more young women to considering IT/digital as a good career choice and make the movement self-sustaining.”


Together Housing rolls out 1st Touch

The Together Housing Group has begun to deploy an enterprise mobile workforce software from 1st Touch.

It has made the software available to more than 200 operatives in its responsive repairs team, followed by assets and income teams, and plans to do so for voids management and planning. Ultimately 500 operatives will use the technology, which it is using with the Aareon housing management system.

Shane Hollingdrake, systems co-ordinator of Together, said: “By introducing the technology across the business, we will drive value for money and derive some major benefits. For example, with our responsive repairs operation, trades operatives don’t have to return to base for job sheets or information as all the details can be sent to their device each morning. This saves time and travel costs and operatives can also fit in more jobs per day.”

Together Housing Group comprises seven companies, each run by a skilled voluntary board made up of tenants, council representatives and independent experts, and manages over 35,000 homes in the north of England.


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