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News shots …. 16 June 2016



South Tyneside gets news aerial imagery

South Tyneside Council has deployed a new aerial photography dataset within its geographical information system to support its strategic planning and as part of its intranet.

The council took delivery of the imagery early in the year from Bluesky to replace an aerial photography set that had not been updated for several years.

It has since begun to use it in a number of departments, including planning, highways and asset management. The planning team is using it to identify suspected breaches of planning controls and as a possible source of evidence for enforcement action.


Enfield and Stockport to roll out benefits app

An app designed by Looking Local that helps residents to decide whether they are better off in work or claiming benefits has been rolled out by London Borough of Enfield, with Stockport Council soon to follow.

The BetterOff app provides a calculator that allows users to compare income from a job to benefits they could claim. It also enables claimants to fill in some forms online, and offers a job vacancy feed, interview advice, information on childcare and transport and a feature that lets users log an appeal against a decision.

Looking Local, the Kirklees Council owned operation that provides digital solutions plans to add Housing Benefit and Council Tax reduction forms in the coming weeks. It also has plans to integrate BetterOff with Universal Credit and will launch a series of video and plain English guides in.


Survey finds civil servants don’t get GaaP

A majority of civil servants either do not understand the idea of Government as a Platform (GaaP), according to a survey of 2,100 by Northgate Public Services.

The company said that 74% were unaware of did not fully understand the programme, which is one of the central features of the Government Digital Service’s work.

Other findings included that only 7% of respondents believed their organisation would achieve its digital goals, but 59% saw the biggest gains in digital transformation in automating more services.


Solihull College invests in Advanced

Solihull College & University Centre has recently gone live with the ProResource suite for finance and curriculum planning supplied by software and IT services firm Advanced. It has also implemented the ProSAR self-assessment reporting solution and ProObserve lesson observation system.

The investment will make it possible for the college to closely monitor its financial plans against targets in real time by replacing spreadsheets, and to simplify the assessment of courses through the use Ofsted criteria by centrally validating data.

Information systems manager Jo Haine said: “The new solutions will enable us to better analyse income and expenditure and improve our apprenticeship modelling to support us in meeting our funding targets.”



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