As a leading developer and provider of a broad range of software solutions for UK public sector organisations, Idox has a longstanding and highly regarded role in enabling engagement between government and citizens.
In this blog post, Idox’s Morwen Johnson looks at the role of crowdfunding in community regeneration.
One of the highlights of the Facilities industry calendar is the Facilities Show at Excel held in June.
At the show CAFM Explorer, Idox's facilities management software solution, led the way in demonstrating the benefits that can be achieved from implementing an all-in-one software solution that is constantly evolving through industry feedback and input from an active user group.
'Simplicity' was something we heard repeatedly throughout the show. Many visitors we spoke to were looking for a simpler solution, to move away from their existing systems that they felt were either 'too clunky' or didn't provide an integrated solution.
One of the trends of 2016 was an increased interest in space planning, possibly born out of the BIM level 2 deadline passing in April. Our space planning functionality and integration with Autodesk was well received as well as our BIM & Cobie integration.
Alongside visitors looking to move supplier, we saw an increased number of people who were looking to implement a CAFM solution for the first time. Many appreciated how we highlighted pain points and benefits on our stand, with workforce efficiency, risk mitigation, easy access to key data (and no more lost data!), critical event alerts and compliance management all being topics of conversation throughout the week.
In addition, there was a very positive response to our on-stand product demos with many attendees expressing their preference for CAFM Explorer's 'single solution', as opposed to several modules of software being bolted together
Claire Visser, CAFM Director, comments, "It has been a great week for us; we've had interesting conversations with customers, prospects and industry partners we are working with such as SFG20. It was also great to be able to offer a record number of live demo's on our stand, many of which were booked before the show opened. Being part of the facilities show ensures we can showcase our leading software solution, open new opportunities and network with interesting 3rd parties that can add value to our offerings.
For more please visit www.cafmexplorer.com
As councils strive to implement effective cost-cutting measures, they are tasked with looking beyond ‘what we have always done’ and thinking strategically for the long term.
Looking at councils more closely, the latest GRANTfinder whitepaper:
- takes an in-depth look at the importance of external funding;
- evaluates the role of the external funding officer in local authorities, supplemented with UK-wide examples; and
- identifies the benefits and challenges that come when competing for resources.
A digital copy of the paper is available to request here
Since the elections that were held in May 2016 and the recent EU Referendum – Idox Elections has been delivering a wide-range of electoral services and managed solutions to assist our customers during this difficult and busy period. In addition to these elections, we have also assisted in delivering by-elections, community council elections and Neighbourhood Planning Referendums.
To give you an idea of the scale of what we have delivered to our customers this year take a look at the following statistics:
- Number of polling cards printed and delivered = 3.5 million
- Number of postal vote packs printed and delivered = 1 million postal packs including 500,000 which were combined packs and included 2 ballot papers and a regional list in Scotland
- Number of ballot papers: 11.5 million ballot papers across books and postal applications
- Number of signatures (postal votes) scanned and checked = 1 million postal vote statements scanned and verified
This would normally be a major challenge for most suppliers, but Idox Elections managed to deliver theses services with ease.
At Idox Elections’ we offer a comprehensive range of fully-managed electoral services; from consultancy, staff training, data management, to print, distribution, e-counting and e-voting as well as the project management and supervision required to deliver success in conjunction with the council’s own workforce
From our ever growing experience, we are fully aware of the professionalism and integrity that applies to providing our customers with the high levels of service and quality this specialist sector demands. We actively engage with the issues and challenges that the electoral administrators continually face and we specialise in designing and delivering a wide range of innovative and cost effective solutions to meet these needs.
For more information about our range of elections services, visit: Idox Elections.
As the nuclear industry confronts serious financial challenges, a new benchmarking survey will assess nuclear plants’ progress in automation and help them take the next steps towards modernisation and reducing costs.
Nuclear power has come a long way since the world's first commercial nuclear power station started up in 1960. Today, nuclear supplies more than 11% of the world’s electricity, and in some regions this figure is even higher: in the United States, almost 100 nuclear reactors produce over 19% of total electrical output, while the European Union depends on nuclear power for more than a quarter of its electricity.
Since the 1970s, the nuclear industry has dramatically improved its safety and operational performance, and is now seen as a reliable, carbon-free source of energy. The industry also has a significant economic role. In the US alone, nuclear power contributes $60bn a year to the economy, and employs half a million workers.
5 ways to impress your EU evaluator with your grant application
Companies from all around Europe who participate in an international consortium and are working on innovative technology projects that contribute to solving a social problem can apply for funding from the popular European Funding Programme Eurostars.
This month a new Eurostars call for projects opened. Consortia consisting of at least one high-tech SME joined by at least one other company or research institution are invited to apply. History shows that competition among Eurostars applicants is high. Therefore Vindsubsidies, the Idox Grants authority in the Netherlands, shares five tips that will help you to impress your EU project evaluator and increase your chance to win funding for your project.
Eurostars is a joint programme between EUREKA and the European Commission, co-funded from the national budgets of 34 Eurostars Participating States. Eurostars is aimed at companies across all sectors, providing the project is technology based. Furthermore, there must be an international consortium consisting of at least two organisations, and the project leader must be a high-tech R&D performing SME. Most consortia consist of three parties, two of which are SMEs.
Eurostars application can be submitted until 15 September 2016. Contribution from the Eurostars programme varies from 25% to 50% depending on country of origin, type of organisation and type of activity (e.g. Research or Development).
Read full article: Eurostars: funding for high-tech solutions and international cooperation
On the 18th March, the Queen’s Speech set out the government’s legislative programme for the year ahead. This included the Digital Economy Bill, a piece of legislation which aims to ensure the UK is a world leader in digital provision.
Idox is a market-leading developer and provider of a broad range of digital solutions to support public and private sector organisations in managing information and knowledge, documents, content, business processes and workflow. In this article, Idox’s Steven McGinty considers the implications of the EU referendum result for the UK’s Digital Economy Bill.
Full article: Digital Economy Bill – the impact of Brexit
In the UK on the 12 May 2016, the Housing and Planning Act 2016 received Royal Assent and passed into the law of the land. Across a broad spectrum of subjects, the act deals with several aspects, including housing, estate agents, rent charges, planning and compulsory purchases. Many of the changes are minor amendments to legislation, additions to clauses, redefinitions and clarifications.
The Housing and Planning Bill was first introduced in October 2015 by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Greg Clark, but it has taken a great deal of negotiation between the House of Lords and House of Commons before it’s been passed. The aim of the proposed bill when it was announced was a national crusade to get one million homes built by 2020 in the UK. It is hoped that this bill will make it easier for first-time buyers and renters to be able to get on the property ladder and own a home of their own – something that is seen as a pipe-dream to many recent middle-income graduates. So it is one of the most important pledges made in the bill to build 200,000 starter homes. These will be available to first-time buyers aged between 23 and 40, at a price 20% below their market value.
CAFM Explorer, Idox's market-leading facilities management software, offers an all-in-one solution that delivers the functionality that today’s Facilities Managers need to successfully manage their facility.
The latest release provides enhancements to three key areas of CAFM Explorer including:
- Checklist functionality for statutory inspections<
- CAFM web-based room booking functionality
- Helpdesk functionality and usability.
These enhancements were generated through customer led discussions at our User Group events to support the effective and efficient management of facilities and their operational environments.
For more information, download our latest brochure: What’s new in CAFM Explorer? which details the enhancements to functionality, or alternatively watch our short video demo which illustrates the latest updates.
If you would like more information on CAFM Explorer and how you could benefit from being part of an active User Group, please get in touch or call 0870 333 7101.
Research Impact is fast becoming a key metric in determining the value of research. And what is driving this agenda? The need to justify to the taxpayer the added value that the UK’s world-leading research provides to the communities and economies around them.
This ‘impact agenda’ lends itself to what Dr Karl Smith of London South Bank University dubs as ‘The Golden Triangle’ of research, impact and funding.
In the latest Idox blog, we review the importance of impact and how it can be used to translate research into the real world in light of Dr Smith’s guest speaker slot during Idox’s workshop at the 2016 ARMA Annual Conference.
Read the full article: Research in the Real World: The Importance of Impact
Idox is a market-leading developer and provider of a broad range of digital solutions for UK local authorities. Our services include the recently launched iApply service to ease the submission process for planning and building control applications. In this article, Idox’s Morwen Johnson reports from this week’s RTPI Planning Convention, where the importance of technology in planning featured prominently.
The UK’s decision to leave the EU after a 43-year membership has led to a period of speculation and uncertainty. The latest Idox blog reviews key questions being posed at this time and provides an initial funding outlook, together with anticipated changes over the coming months and years as Article 50 is triggered.
Read the full article: The UK Post-Referendum – What Now?
Idox is a market-leading developer and provider of a broad range of digital solutions for UK local authorities. Our services include ReadingRoom’s cutting-edge digital consultancy solutions, and the recently launched iApply service to ease the submission process for planning and building control applications.
In this article, Idox’s Steven McGinty considers the implications of the Local Government Digital Service Standard.Tweet
Christchurch & East Dorset Councils have selected Idox Public Access solution to provide an on-line public resource, designed to improve the delivery of Licensing. One of the key benefits of Public Access is that it provides relevant, up-to-date information automatically to citizens, elected members and other stakeholders, thereby reducing the need for direct contact with the service department either by telephone or by personal visits to the office.
The new system will be integrated with the existing Idox Document Management System solution already in use by the council.
Five major figures reflect candidly on the original New Town programmes, in a new report published by Idox. Drawing on original archive interview material, the report offers an intriguing insight into the challenges they faced in creating communities from scratch.
Idox, the leading provider of Planning, Building Control and related services in the UK, today launched the report “Planning the New Towns – In Their Own Words”, edited by Morwen Johnson. The report makes publicly available for the first time, 5 interviews carried out in the 1980s and 1990s with those directly involved. As they reflect on their experience we can hear pride, as well as a touch of bemusement at the scale of the programme that they were part of delivering.
The 33 New Towns developed since 1946 represent the most sustained programme of new town development undertaken anywhere in the world. Today, they are home to over three million people.
The New Towns Programme drew on the expertise and enthusiasm of a group of committed and visionary planners and architects. As well as being the driving force behind specific New Town schemes, many of these individuals became major figures in the development of late 20th century architecture and town planning in the UK.
The interview material features:
- Lord Campbell of Eskan - “I was really astonished how fortunate we were that we weren’t lynched in the streets with the appalling upheaval that it meant”
- Walter Bor, CBE – “Cities must absorb change, live with it, rather than prohibit it”
- Professor Derek Walker – “I am optimistic that mediocrity is not an inherent British trait”
- Sir George Grenfell-Baines - “One of the aspects which makes the British New Town Movement unique is the public money that was actually put into it.”
- Sir David Gosling - “The corporate spirit of the team was legendary and it was probably its interdisciplinary structure which assisted in its radical thinking”
This report celebrates the life-long commitment and vision which the planning profession brings to place-making. It also represents a historical narrative of the radical spirit that inspired those who built the New Towns.
East Northamptonshire Council has used a range of Idox solutions over a number of years including Planning, Building Control and Environmental Health and has extended its portfolio with the addition of Idox Electronic Document Management Solution (EDMS) replacing their existing Microsoft SharePoint system.
The new system will be integrated into these existing Idox solutions in order to improve the sharing and flow of information across the Directorate and to support the online publication of documents for citizens, consultees and third parties helping to increase efficiency and improve the delivery of services.
Idox is a supplier of specialist information management solutions and services. Our services include software solutions for UK public sector organisations and Real Time Passenger Information Systems, as well as world class engineering document control and developing websites, apps, digital content and online platforms for clients all around the globe. In this article, Idox’s Rebecca Jackson focuses on the barriers preventing more women from entering the technology sector, and reflects on how those obstacles could be overcome.
Click here to read the full article.
NIRMA, the Nuclear Information Records Management Association, is partnering with leading engineering information management company, Idox EIM (McLaren Software) to launch a new benchmarking study. The survey will assess the levels of maturity when leveraging information technology in the design change process, across the US Nuclear industry.
With the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) embarking on a three year industry initiative, there is a renewed focus among nuclear operators on improving efficiencies and reducing costs. Delivering the Nuclear Promise: Advancing Safety, Reliability and Economic Performance is a multiyear strategy to transform the industry, seeking to analyze technological and operational changes that could enhance safety and provide greater efficiency. The strategy is also concerned with leveraging technology to ensure widespread adoption of innovative tools and techniques that could reduce costs.
Rebecca Wessman, President at NIRMA, commented: “As every plant already has some degree of automation in managing the design change process, we felt it useful to try and measure the level of maturity to which each plant is performing today. To achieve this, we have identified a series of design change maturity levels to support a self-assessment approach. We are conducting an online survey, in partnership with Idox EIM, of all the nuclear operators and will publish the aggregated findings – without any mention of specific plant operators – at the NIRMA Annual Conference in August. This will allow each nuclear plant to perform a benchmarking assessment on their maturity ranking against the industry as a whole and gain insight into how they measure up with best practice.”
Tim Fleet, VP of Business Development with Idox EIM commented: “A key aspect of every nuclear plant is managing the design change process and making sure it is performed in a consistent and repeatable manner. Every plant already does this in order to maintain compliance with its own quality guidelines and federal regulations. What varies, however, is the method to achieve the compliance and the level to which information technology is leveraged as part of the process.”
Tim continued: “We have been providing solutions to the nuclear industry for over 20 years and believe there is an opportunity to raise the bar in this area by increasing the level of automation when managing design change, so nuclear plants can increase efficiencies and lower costs. We conducted a benchmarking study with NIRMA back in 2014 and it will be interesting to see how much progress has been made with those outcomes: parallel working, less paper-driven activity and improved communication since then.”
He explained: “The results of this new study will help us provide advice on how nuclear plants can advance upwards within the maturity model. It might be a single leap to the current best practice, or just a small incremental step up the maturity ladder but the results will provide us with a picture of the current environment and what more needs to be done to achieve the aims of the NEI Promise.”
About NIRMANuclear Information and Records Management Association (NIRMA) is the nuclear industry’s leader in information and records management. Since 1976, NIRMA has been uniquely qualified to provide guidance to commercial and Department of Energy facilities in the areas of quality records programs, regulatory compliance activities, electronic records initiatives, document management technologies, and knowledge management issues.
For the NHS, research provides the opportunity to grow, learn and develop towards a better, more efficient health future. As a society we know why we do research but how can we make it really count?
At a time when every penny counts for a cash-strapped NHS, the billions of pounds invested each year are expected to deliver the tangible outcomes, targets and results required.
Emma Wootton takes a look at the necessity for getting research evidence into practice, supported by commentary from the 2016 NHS Research and Development Forum.Read the full article: Getting research evidence into practice – why it matters now, more than ever
Tower Hamlets, Test Valley Borough Council and Winchester City Council have all selected Idox to supply them with the Exacom software solution to better manage Community Infrastructure Levy and Section 106 Monitoring and Project Management. The new solution will significantly simplify the complex management of these processes and enable effective financial control over CIL and S106 fund collection and spending.
CILs and S106 agreements provide significant funding to local authorities as a result of development and enable the provision of a wide range of infrastructure such as new roads, schools, park improvements and social care facilities.