Issue - meetings

Digital Strategy

Meeting: 17/11/2016 - City Executive Board (became Cabinet on 13 May 2019) (Item 92)

92 Digital Strategy pdf icon PDF 108 KB

The Head of Business Improvement has submitted a report which seeks approval for a Digital Strategy and its implementation.

 

Recommendations: That the City Executive Board resolves to

 

1.    Adopt the Digital Strategy and associated action plan as set out at Appendices 1 and 2.

 

2.    Delegate authority to the Head of Business Improvement in consultation with the Board Member for Customer and Corporate Services the annual review of the action plan

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cllr Price took the Chair

Cllr Turner left the meeting

Cllr Brown arrived at the meeting

 

The Head of Business Improvement presented the Digital Strategy report which sought approval for a Digital Strategy and its implementation. She said that since the re-development of the Council’s website, 32% of customers now contact the council online.

 

Cllr Hollingsworth said that in regards to Scrutiny recommendation3 – improving the use of the online planning service:  The recommendation is included in the action plan of the Statement of Community Involvement 2015.

 

Cllr Price said it was never good to have actions listed as “ongoing” he asked that officers review the action plan and put a specific date next to the actions that were listed as “on-going”.

 

Cllr Price said the strategy did not clearly deal with the ways to encourage people who are not confident IT users to use online services. He felt this was what Scrutiny’s recommendation 4 – Access to Council’s Website in community centres was all about. Cllr Price recommended that recommendation 4 be agreed and that the Council’s Communities’ team explore what IT services could be provided in community centres.

 

Cllr Simm felt that recommendation 4 was not helpful as the community centre strategy had been agreed and there had been no mention during the consultation that IT access at community centres was desired. There was a distinction between the large community centre hub type and smaller centres managed by volunteers.  She recommended that the Board ask the Communities team to scope what IT services were already available in different communities. The Communities Team could report their findings to CEB if needed.

 

Cllr Hollingsworth said that the work should expand to include wherever there is a public assessable computer– not just community centres but shops and libraries.

 

Cllr Brown said online access is not just about our buildings, but whether people access online services in their homes.

 

The Chief Executive said the work needed to be a multi organisational study. It’s not just about having access to a computer but being able to use and navigate online systems.  Libraries provide computer training sessions and public computer.  He suggested that the Council audit what is available in different communities and work out where the gaps are.

 

The City Executive Board resolved to

 

1.    Adopt the Digital Strategy and associated action plan as set out at Appendices 1 and 2.

 

2.    Delegate authority to the Head of Business Improvement in consultation with the Board Member for Customer and Corporate Services the annual review of the action plan

 

Agree that a scoping exercise be commissioned to determine what publicly accessible computer services are available in different communities of the city; and work out where the gaps are.


Meeting: 17/11/2016 - City Executive Board (became Cabinet on 13 May 2019) (Item 87)

87 Digital Strategy pdf icon PDF 96 KB

Scrutiny Committee report to follow.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Scrutiny report was considered alongside the substantive item minute 92 Digital Strategy.

 


Meeting: 07/11/2016 - Scrutiny Committee (Item 59)

59 Digital Strategy pdf icon PDF 109 KB

 

Background Information

 

The Scrutiny Committee has asked for this item to be included on the agenda for pre-decision scrutiny.

 

Why is it on the agenda?

 

The City Executive Board will be asked to approve the Digital Strategy and associated action planat its meeting on 17 November 2016.  This is an opportunity for the Scrutiny Committee to make recommendations to the Board.

 

Who has been invited to comment?

 

·         Councillor Susan Brown, Board Member for Customer & Corporate Services;

·         Neil Lawrence, Digital Development Manager.

 

 

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Digital Development Manager presented the report. The Digital Strategy explains how the Council will use technology to improve customer services. The Strategy has a customer focus and will provide automated services (for those who wish to use them) and broaden the range of services customers can access on the Council’s website.

 

The Committee discussed the challenges of making services accessible for people who don’t use computers. The Committee received assurances that the Council wouldn’t be stopping services to those who don’t use computers and that officers would still be available for members of the public to talk to. The Strategy was just about making more services accessible on-line. Technology was also recognised as increasing inclusiveness, as accessibility programs enable people with disabilities to access council services online.

 

 Cllr Tidball welcomed the fact that the new Council website met AA accessibility standards and suggested a number of groups and individuals the Council could engage with around online accessibility, such as the student disability community and the University of Oxford’s Accessibility Advisor.

 

Cllr Simmons noted that the Strategy did not extend to outside visitors, he felt that as many search engines directed visitors to the Council website there was a need for the Strategy and action plan to outline how the Council would direct these visitors to tourist providers.

 

Cllr Fry felt that the planning part of the council website was quite difficult to navigate and improving this should be a priority in the Action Plan. The Digital Development Manager said that the planning software was provided by a national provider and that it would be a challenge to make significant improvements until such a time as the contract was due for renewal.

 

Cllr Henwood said it would be beneficial to have access of the Council website at the community centres so that people without computers could access council services online.

 

Cllr Simmons said that the Digital Strategy’s customer focus could transform how Council engaged with customers.  He suggested it would be worthwhile to combine the Digital Strategy with the Community Engagement Strategy.

 

The Scrutiny Committee agreed the following recommendation to CEB

 

That the Council consults with disability groups on the accessibility of online council services.

 

That the Digital Strategy and Action Plan mention the needs of visitors, in particular how the Council website could direct visitors to tourist providers.

 

That the Council prioritises improving the ease of use of online planning services, and includes this longer-term aim in the Action Plan.

 

That consideration is given to whether the Council’s website could be more accessible from community centres.

 

That consideration is given to whether the Digital Strategy could be combined with the Community Engagement Strategy in future.