Newsletter, June 2015 No Images?  Click here

Hi there,

This month's newsletter brings you an exciting new development: LG Inform on tablets! We've also added ProClass to the local government information standards, and why not join us for breakfast on 9 July to talk about open data? If you have a story you'd like to tell everyone, please don't hesitate to let us know.

LG Inform now supported on tablets!

Working on a mobile device? Good news! LG Inform is now available on your tablet, which will help make accessing information and reports easier than ever, wherever you are. Simply load up the LG Inform website on your tablet and you'll be instantly viewing the brand new version. It's compatible with Android, Windows and iOS, meaning it'll work perfectly on your Google Nexus, Microsoft Surface or Apple iPad. The update also allows you to:

  • quickly search for data about different services and topics,
  • view reports and share on social media, and
  • compare your area’s performance to other similar areas.

For a live demonstration, come visit us at the Innovation Zone at the LGA Annual Conference, 30 June–2 July and use the 'Forward' button at the bottom of this email to let all your colleagues know the good news. We're really excited about it and hope to hear some of your success stories in demonstrating your local authority's good performance out and about, throughout your local streets and enclaves.

New and updated metrics

Need to report on areas shared by authorities?

Some of you may know that we're working on a new tool that enables you to build custom geographies, based on areas served by different authorities. For example, if a community intersects wards served by two different councils, you'll now be able to aggregate data for the entire area rather than checking each individual section. We're implementing it in to Natural Neighbourhoods and it's shaping up to be incredibly useful for places such as Crystal Palace, which itself is split by five London boroughs. But we're now looking for more examples to help inform our work.

We've already started adding park areas for Ashfield and Mansfield, as well as the local enterprise partnerships up and down the country, but is your council combining services with a neighbour? If so, we'd love to hear from you. Don't hesitate to get in touch!

ProClass added to esd-standards

A comprehensive, easy to use procurement classification is essential for any council seeking to understand its third party expenditure in order that they can:

  • understand the effect on its local economy;
  • save money by collaborating with other councils on common spend areas;
  • help with comparing spend with other councils; and
  • understand whether plans to transform services will save money or cost more.

ProClass classification is now available through our local government information standards via the Standards site. You may already be familiar with previous versions of ProClass – which for more than a decade have helped the sector quickly compare financial spend and procurement information – but this new version can open up pathways to further insight for local authorities. A study found that 30 per cent of English local authorities use ProClass either uniquely or alongside an existing coding system. Over 40 per cent of those authorities also said that it helps them to meet efficiency and transparency agendas. This new version, published as a full list instead of separating local authority and emergency service classifications, is

  • a new standard, combining other classification lists (UNSPC, CPV, NSV, NHS-eClass, Thomson),
  • mapped to our Functions list,
  • interactive and exposes the lower hierarchical levels, and
  • published as linked open data.

Our partner, Improvement & Efficieny South East (iESE) will continue to contribute towards the governance of the code updates along with the Procurement National Advisory Group. Please do get in touch with if you want to suggest or contribute to amendments and updates.

Training days added to calendar

Join us for a training day to hear all about LG Inform and the tools in LG Inform Plus, including the report builder, Natural Neighbourhoods, and Records Retention. We now have days booked across the country (listed below) but please don't hesitate to let us know if you think your authority and neighbouring councils could benefit from some training.

Join our informal breakfast meeting on 9 July