Improving Service Performance Through IT
Encentre has recently been involved in the development of new innovations in service delivery through information technology. The team are keen to emphasize the benefits of using exisitng forms of technology in regulatory services.
"Its not until you start experimenting with technology that you start to recognise it's potential worth for environmental health teams. It doesn't replace officers on the ground but can help steer practitioners away from ritualistic behaviour and enable service providers to become more focused on goals and risk (in other words, help us achieve what we are all here for)". As well as supporting Hampton principles, utilising IT authorities can:
- Lower operating costs;
- Become more efficient;
- Become more outcome focused;
- Gather measureable intelligence;
- Analyse and research of information; and
- Respond to change.
Here are some examples of our recent applications:
ONLINE SERVICES & COMMUNICATION
There are still some core areas where most local authorities are able to enhance service quality, for example, just by improving the use of their own websites and use of electronic communication. Delivering better information on the web, linked into automated replies and in email corresponence will, for many, provide simple and low-cost efficiencies. Performing some simple analysis of the interaction that takes place and the effectiveness of your service allows you to adapt and initiate improvements. Being able to identify patterns in the problems experienced will steer decisions as to where your online effort goes.
APP AND MOBILE TECHNOLOGY
App's have to be able to deliver efficiencies, improvements to servcie delivery or provide significant benefits to customers. We recently designed and produced the Noise Nuisance mobile application which can be used and promoted by any local authority in Britain. The Noise Nuisance App provides key information to complainants, convenient logging of noise events and enables officers to prioritise cases.
Encentre has also started to implement flexible and accessible solutions that will help transform intervention based strategies. One of the new mobile resources we have developed enables food hygiene inspections and paperwork to be completed and delivered fully on-site without the need for paper or an office. There are also opportunities available to integrate mobile solutions with existing IT systems. It has never been more important for Regulatory Servies to capitalise on the benefits that mobile technology offers.
One of the disciplines that local authorities sometimes struggle with is in the collection of reliable data. Data is increasingly required to justify and inform intervention strategies. For many the problem has been a cyclical one; without sufficent information the authority are unable to back-up their intervention strategy; nor do they have the ability to measure the effectiveness of their outputs. Systems we are currently developing will allow data to be collected in order to target strategies for the reduction of risk. Intelligence-led servcies allows service managers to implement evidence based intervention and education strategies.