Local Digital
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Local Digital

Sprint Notes #35

Covering 30 September — 13 October

Sprint notes number 35 — covering 30 Sept — 13 October

Welcome back to our sprint notes! Read on to find out about our session at LocalGovCamp ‘Lite’, the launch of a new tool which focuses on placements of Children who are Looked After (CLA), and SAVVI’s DataConnect21 event.

We launched the Council Spotlight Series

Last week, we launched the new council spotlight blog series. We wanted to create a space where councils could showcase their achievements and contributions to the local digital movement.

Croydon Council’s digital team is our first council to be part of the blog post series

LDCU tweet launching the Council Spotlight. October’s edition is by #croydondigital Neil Williams, Annie Heath and Dave Briggs

We’ve received some great feedback and are really excited to continue highlighting councils digital journeys. We will publish one blog post per month, and welcome nominations.

Getting involved is easy, just fill out the online form to nominate:

  • your council/a specific team within your council
  • your colleague(s)
  • or a great digital project
  • are only 7 short questions, and the form should take no more than a few minutes to fill out.

Once you’ve filled the form out, we’ll get back to you within 2 working days.

Come to our sessions at LocalGovCamp ‘21

We’re taking part in this year’s LocalGovCamp and we’d like you to join us.

Hear from some of our funded projects and see a demo from the Digital Planning team:

10:00am — 11:00am : lighting talks from funded projects, collaborating with local authorities, and working with you to shape the Local Digital community

11:00am — 12:00pm : Digital Planning - digital aspects of DLUHC’s Planning Reform and demo of co-designed projects

Sign up to our LocalGovCamp sessions.

LDCU tweet: join us at #LocalGovCamp ’21 on Thursday 21 October from 10–12pm.

How our training offer is supporting local government with day-to-day working

Our training library has already received 218 applications from more than 100 councils, for over 40 funded courses!

In our latest blog post, find out how our online training offer is supporting council staff to learn practical skills, refresh their knowledge, and gain the confidence to influence change within their organisation. Read the training blog post.

Funded Projects

Children’s Social Care Demand

Since the last sprint, the team have launched their Demand Modelling Tool for Children who are Looked After (CLA) Placements. This tool has already been downloaded 40 times in the first 3 days of launching — well done team!

The tool helps local authorities to examine placement data for children in care. It’s used by commissioning managers in local authorities and allows them to forecast where more placements are needed, and how much they will cost.

By working to Data to Insight’s collaborative development principles, they’ve made a tool which will be used by local authorities all over the country.

Demand Modelling Tool for CLA Placements description which can be found on: https://www.datatoinsight.org/tools

Currently, the team is gathering feedback from commissioning managers through one-to-one sessions. This allows the tool to be iterated and creates a space for commissioning managers to ask any questions when inputting their data.

The team are also liaising with regional groups and partnerships to explore the possibility of regionwide demand modelling. It would allow local authorities to predict front door referrals for children in care to social care departments and allocate resources as a result. This would help commissioning partnerships to better work together on collaborative commissioning.

Data Exchange with Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS)

Two sessions of user research were held with Camden’s VCS strategic partners: Covent Garden Dragon Hall trust, Highgate Newtown Community Centre, C4 Consortium and Kentish Town Community Centre.

User research was focused on gathering key quotes and emerging themes around data exchange and sharing, and what interventions would be helpful.

The team also attended the Food Mission Update Meeting, which is also attended by Corporate Services, Community Services and Public Health. We Make Camden’s ‘food mission’ is focused on enabling ‘access to food for all’.

SAVVI (Scalable Approach to Vulnerability via Interoperability)

The team has shared the Societal Early Need Application (SENA) case study with Huntingdonshire District Council. It will be shared with a small group of local authorities shortly.

Paul Davidson, SAVVI Product Owner, presented at DataConnect21 on Thursday 30 September. If you missed it, you can watch the recording.

Quality Data for Children in Care

On 11 October, the team held an event attended by 20 people. They demonstrated a prototype of the error checking and validation tool so attendees could see how it worked.

By working with data to insight, data analysts have learnt how to use Python to write data validation rules, so they can build this tool and add data throughout the year. Therefore, the data is now more reliable, and errors are checked and resolved throughout the year. There is no longer a ‘pinch point’ during the submission window to the DfE.

Another perk of the tool is that it is solely browser based -there’s no issue with needing to download software.

The team did a call out for volunteers to test the tool and are now engaged with volunteers on a one-to-one basis, which allows them to respond to feedback. If you would like to volunteer to test this tool, get in touch with us at support@localdigital.gov.uk and we’ll make sure you are contacted by the data to insight team.

The team will continue working on this tool with volunteers and will agree from feedback what to focus on next.

Teams meeting showing: project kickoff was on 17 August, currently the team are in week 9, and the tool will be finished in week 14 on 15 November. The team have engaged 18 people in coding or learning to code rules.

They are also currently working on creating and developing a delivery plan which will be released to local authorities.

Thanks for reading! For the daily download on all things #LocalDigital, be sure to follow us on Twitter.

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