Making the most of Council held information to transform service delivery has been a central aim of South Tyneside Council since 2004. This is demonstrated particularly well through the continued
evolution of its website. The Varney report on ‘Service Transformation’ recommended that 50% of activity should be moved from the phone to the web. This is borne out by the latest published figures for typical transaction costs with £0.17p for a web transaction, £4.00 for a phone transaction and £7.81 for a face-to-face transaction (Source: NWEGG).
The NI14 ‘Avoidable Contact’ indicator proved controversial but SOCITM says that all enquiries coming into a council through non-web channels for information and transactions that are available on the web should be regarded as ‘avoidable contacts’. For this reason one of the Council’s main objectives continues to focus on improving the provision of citizen focused information and transactional opportunities, through automation, improved web access and a personalised alert service. Much of this has been enabled through the adoption of Astun Technology’s iShare data integration and publishing platform.