The latest ALGIM News and Updates

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  • 5 Aug 2020 7:01 PM | Anonymous

    Thank you to those councils who submitted a nomination for the ALGIM 2020 Special Awards. We are delighted by the response, having received 46 incredible nominations.

    We look forward to announcing the award winners at an online ceremony on Friday, 2 October, more details to follow.

    As a reminder, the three categories for nominations were:

    Supportive Team Award

    This award is all about the people. Whether it's your team, or another team you worked with, this award will recognise those who pulled together and made the seemingly impossible happen. It could be your customer service team shifting to a remote call centre in two days, the IT team that worked tirelessly to ensure everyone could work from home, or the comms team that kept everyone updated and in the know. Whoever it is, we want to award their hard work.

    Fast-Tracked Project Award

    Did you see COVID barreling toward us and suddenly realise the project you were working on would soon be a necessity? That's what this award is all about. Those projects that were already on the programme for this year, but had to be brought forward to meet your council's business needs.

    New Initiatives Award

    This one is all about the innovation. We've heard plenty of stories of how councils came up with brand new initiatives to keep their core business functions running, stay in communication with their communities, and ensure everyone was safe. So, if you have a new project that only came about because of COVID and its impacts, this award is for you!




  • 29 Jul 2020 11:04 AM | Anonymous

    We've had some great entries into our 2020 ALGIM Special Awards to recognise the incredible work carried out by unsung heroes throughout local government.

    With our special awards programme, ALGIM wishes to recognise the amazing work done by councils in response to the COVID crisis.

    These awards focus on three main areas; people, projects, and innovation.

    They are open for all ALGIM members to apply - across ICT, GIS, Information/Records Management, Web & Digital, and Customer Experience disciplines.

    Please enter, share your story, and be part of celebrating the successes of local government.

    The awards will be presented at a special online awards ceremony on Thursday, 24 September 2020.

    Nominations close 5 pm, Friday, 31 July 2020

    Nominate here

  • 22 Jul 2020 1:31 PM | Anonymous

    You will have noticed an enriched ALGIM webinar programme in recent times. To enable ALGIM to continue to bring great speakers and topics of interest to your desktop we are offering a new subscription model. We have designed the annual subscription option to be a lot more cost effective than the current ‘pay as you go’ model.

    With our new subscription service, we will provide your council with at least 24 high-quality webinars each year, providing education and thought leadership across all disciplines.

    Subscribe for all this value and more:

    • 24 high-quality webinars
    • Bringing industry experts and practitioners to you
    • Unlimited access for everyone in your council
    • Ability to participate in live Q+A sessions with the presenters
    • You can watch live or view recordings any time at your convenience
    • One low, annual subscription fee per council
    • You can use these webinars and recordings as training resources for staff
    • The webinar programme content is designed for local government

    To take up this great offer your council must be a current member of ALGIM.

    Starting from 1 August 2020, and with three pricing tiers depending on the size of your council, you will see this pricing provides excellent value for money for your council. Pricing can be found here.

    As the programme is starting on 1 August instead of 1 July, the prices for the first year have been adjusted to 11 months pricing.

    Subscribe to the webinar programme

  • 18 May 2020 10:06 AM | Anonymous

    Back in March ALGIM surveyed councils to find out more about the technology they use in their council chambers, and how they're live streaming meetings.

    With the obvious caveat that this was carried out pre-COVID, there are a lot of great lessons to be taken from the research.

    Read the paper (member log-in required)
  • 15 May 2020 3:03 PM | Anonymous

    The Web Audits and CX Mystery Shop are some of ALGIM’s most valued annual activities for local government.

    They provide a snapshot of the local government sector, guidance on where councils can improve, and provide annual rankings.

    While ALGIM won't be undertaking the annual, large-scale Web Audit and CX Mystery Shop in 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions, we welcome requests from those councils who wish to engage ALGIM to undertake an individual web audit or mystery shop for their council.

    For more information and pricing, please register your interest.

    Register your interest

  • 12 May 2020 11:30 AM | Anonymous

    ALGIM is always looking for new ways in which we can support the digital and ICT needs of our members; something which is more important than ever during this time.

    We are members of the international grouping called the Linked Organisation of Local Authorities (LOLA).

    LOLA, together with Socitm in the UK and Major Cities of Europe (MCE), has created a Covid-19 Digital & ICT Impact Survey to allow us to provide our members/organisations with key insight into the challenges they, together with other businesses and organisations in their localities, are encountering. We would like your help to complete this short survey (15-20 minutes):

    Take the survey

    We aim to gain insight from all areas of activity, so we would appreciate if the survey link could be distributed to relevant members of your organisation to complete.

    Gaining responses from a variety of local government organisations in the public sector, and also a wide scope of staff within them, will not only allow for us to provide comprehensive and in depth results to you, but will also allow you to examine these by location, sector, size and more.

    We aim to obtain, as widely as possible, a global insight into the challenges being faced by local government organisations and how they are adapting.

    Our survey is also unique in that the results will be tracked over time, providing you with adaptable insight over time to the changing challenges arising and digital tools available as we transition through lockdown and to the new ‘normal’, allowing you to understand the key areas to focus on with a vision of what the wider public sector is facing and doing to adapt.

    We would appreciate your help in completing this short survey. We would like to collect he first phase of submissions by the end of May – it should only take 15 to 20 minutes, and we will be providing results within 2 weeks of this phase one.

    Planting the flag - a new local normal

    LOLA have also put together a document that provides an initial outline on how local government can emerge from the crisis with a new sense of purpose, without reverting to the way things were.

    This is about making the most of the rapid changes we've been implementing over the past couple of months, and using them to come out the other side more engaged with our communities, and equipped for the future.

    Read the document

  • 5 May 2020 12:36 PM | Anonymous

    New Zealand’s ‘Go hard, go early’ attitude into COVID-19 stay-at-home lockdown challenged all  78 local authorities on a number of fronts, including support for local businesses and communities through a phased re-entry into an economic recession.

    Often criticised for moving too slowly, councils are showing they can collaborate and move at an accelerated speed to meet the needs of their respective communities.

    Ashburton District Council launched its COVID-19 community hub - a web app for COVID-19 related resources, news, information and alerts - within days of moving into restricted levels of lockdown. Co-developed  with neighbouring Timaru District Council, with concept design suggested by Squiz, the app - technically a Progressive Web App (PWA) - was conceived, designed, tested and launched within an impressive two-week window.

    The app has since been adopted by a number of other councils in New Zealand, including  Gisborne and Mackenzie district councils.

    Ashburton didn’t stop there. They followed up with an ‘open for business’ campaign that delivered an intuitive business directory to help rally community support for local businesses. This marketing effort, and business directory tool developed by Squiz, would spark life to a stalled local economy,  as the national COVID-19 alert level was downgraded.

    “There is no textbook for what we are facing right now,” Ashburton District Mayor Neil Brown said, “but our best hope is to continue supporting one another and being united as a community to get our district through this,” he added.

    COVID-19 restrictions may continue for a while.

    However, Ashburton District Council continues to  work innovatively to  stay one step ahead and  help reduce uncertainty while  supporting  its  community wherever possible, and within government guidelines.  

    The beauty of Mid Canterbury Open for Business campaign and business directory, is that it will help residents find what’s available in the district, said Mayor Brown. 

    The benefits are obvious. Not only has Ashburton District Council prepared itself to support their local community, its Economic Development Department is now sharing their knowledge and tools to help other local government organisations succeed. 

    Both the COVID-19 app and the Community Business Directory were developed on Squiz’s Digital Experience Platform.

    Links

          Covid-19 apps - https://covid19.ashburtondc.govt.nz/app, https://covid19.gdc.govt.nz/app, https://mobile.mackenzie.govt.nz/app/_recache

          Ashburton’s community business directory - https://openforbiz.ashburtondc.govt.nz/app


  • 30 Apr 2020 8:52 AM | Anonymous

    Every year ALGIM takes pride in holding informative and engaging conferences for our local government members.

    Unfortunately, due to the continuing COVID-19 situation and the impact this has had on mass gatherings, council training budgets, and travel restrictions, we’ve had to make some tough decisions.

    ALGIM Autumn and Spring Conferences

    The ALGIM Autumn Conference (GIS and Information/Records Management) and ALGIM Spring Conference (Customer Experience and Web & Digital) are cancelled and will not be going ahead in 2020.

    ALGIM Annual Conference

    The ALGIM Annual Conference is still scheduled to go ahead in November, although as we all know the future remains uncertain, so a decision on this will be made closer to the time.

    We are looking to expand the topics for this programme to include areas of interest for GIS, IRM, Web and Digital, and CX.

    What if you’ve already registered?

    If you’ve already registered and paid for the Autumn Conference, we are happy to hold this as a credit towards the Annual Conference (which will incorporate some of the content from the Autumn Conference) or it can be put towards one of the many training courses run by ALGIM throughout the year.

    Alternatively, we can organise a refund if you would prefer. Please contact admin@algim.org.nz to arrange that.

    Thank you for your understanding. If there’s anything ALGIM can do to help your council in this time, please don’t hesitate to let us know.


  • 22 Apr 2020 3:01 PM | Anonymous
    • Thank you to Enghouse Interactive for sharing their new e-book on how to set up a remote working contact centre. You can find the link to the e-book at the bottom of this post.


    • Enghouse Interactive has a dedicated Work from Home page, designed specifically for IT staff and contact centre managers wanting to understand more about remote working; visit enghouseinteractive.com.au/work-from-home/


    • New Zealand’s COVID-19 lockdown is potentially due to be lifted over the next few weeks, but many organisations are talking about making the call to keep their staff at home indefinitely for safety reasons, where feasible. For a contact centre in particular, social distancing is a challenge with tens or hundreds of agents – previously grouped closely to achieve a tight team environment!

      Even when COVID-19 safety reasons go away (although we can only dream of when that happy time may come) there are declarations across the board that for a variety of reasons, home working on the wider scale is here to stay. Travel fatigue, petrol costs, environmental concerns, work-life balance, recruitment advantages and scalability are just some of the reasons that compel this view.

      Another reason that was brand new to many employers, arising for the first time last month, is the link between Business Continuity and working from home. Businesses whose workers were already used to regularly (if not permanently) working from home had a much better time of it recently when it came to COVID-19 and the transition to remote work.

      We have seen (via our video calls!) makeshift offices emerge in dining rooms, garages and bedrooms throughout the country.  Many were up and running quickly, working over VPN or browser and communicating externally and internally via mobile and video.

      But moving a contact centre operation to a home environment isn’t quick or easy, and must be carefully planned to fully reap the benefits. Businesses also need to think about issues like team management and security. Another consideration over the last few weeks has been scalability. While some organisations have downsized, there have been many who have needed to ramp up their contact centres to deal with an increased load as customers or residents seek urgent information relating to the current situation.

      If your managers have had to act as reactively as most of us, it might be a good time now to sit down and review all the elements of a successful work-from-home operation, possibly under increased load. If this is the way of your future, even in the mid-term, then you need to look at ongoing recruitment, provisioning, training and management of the contact centre with a different, ‘virtual’ mind-set.  

      In light of many organisations having to work from home due to the current crisis, we have created an eBook checklist detailing the critical elements for an organisation to review when moving their contact centre team to a remote working environment.

    • What equipment should you think about?
    • What are the things you can do to ease the transition for customers?
    • Are there tools to help?
    • What are the ways to help your staff?
    • What should you do to prepare for the future?
    Enghouse Interactive has a dedicated Work from Home page, designed specifically for IT staff and contact centre managers wanting to understand more about remote working; visit enghouseinteractive.com.au/work-from-home/


    View the e-book


  • 22 Apr 2020 11:40 AM | Anonymous

    Now that you have everything largely in place for the COVID-19 crisis. Have you done all that you could have and what should you be thinking about for the near, medium and longer term to best support your organisation?

    Effectus has customised this 10 step plan from Info-Tech Research Group to help answer those questions and provide a good practical reference document for local government.

    The ten steps are:

    • Prepare IT to support the business
    • Inspire and over deliver
    • Make technology awesome
    • Turn this strategy into a tactical project
    • Focus on the customer
    • IT must help lead business process innovation
    • Protect core operations and IT process
    • Prepare for the economic downturn
    • Re-prioritise the work programme
    • Review and revise security priorities in a pandemic

    You can see detail on these, plus more in the strategy document.

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