£500k On line service for the Council

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  • #54461

    99DylanJones
    Participant

    Can someone please explain to me were the logic is for a Council that is likely to merge in the next couple of years can ‘invest’ in this sort if system by them selves. With the technology platforms available today Wrexham along with ALL Councils should have a common interchangeable back end system and share the costs. The only variation would need to be the front end and personalized for each county — the database with all the information would be behind it.
    Complete and utter madness to undertake this as a Wrexham only project.

    #66774

    NJones
    Participant

    They’ve tried Pan Wales projects before with little success. Strange when bearing in mind that all the councils data can back up to a WAG server in Cardiff.

    #66776

    johnnytv
    Participant

    Being a commercial web developer, I’ve got no idea what on earth they’re supposed to be getting built that would cost anywhere near this much for what they’ve detailed as functionality (on the surface, I haven’t read the full 63 page PDF).

    However, the best part is the naivety that the system will last 10 years – look at how much technology has changed in the past 5 years. I know there is an annual figure (£135k, also ludicrous) for licenses (so the council won’t own the system) and development but I doubt this would cover any considerable changes likely needed in the future as technology evolves.

    I’m also confused by this line:
    “Evidence suggests that households who do not shop or pay bills on line can lose on average £560 per year. With Wrexham’s total households amounting to 57,029* at the last Census in 2011 that means Wrexham residents are missing out on just under £32 million extra into the County Borough.

    Surely the savings listed are down to cheaper prices online for goods and discounts for paperless billing etc. If people don’t use the Internet to shop now (when there are obvious well-known advantages), why would the council having a better website make a current non-Internet user more likely to do so? Are they going to offer discounts on council tax or other bills for paying them through the site? If so is that taken into account when listing the costs/savings of the system?

    Also this line:
    The Council say “The new technology will provide a full range of on line services such as viewing your Council Tax account, reporting Streetscene issues or requesting a licence.

    If that’s the main focus of it, what benefit does that bring to the majority of Wrexham on a regular basis?

    Having worked in the public sector previously and seen money wasted like no tomorrow due to management making decisions on matters they know nothing about, this all seems a bit too familiar. Why they couldn’t do a shared system across Wales and split the bill as suggested above I don’t know.

    It’s like Wrexham CBC is striving to be the “first”, “biggest” or “best” at something in Wales but “competent” or “mediocre” would often be a big step up for them.

    #66777

    jimbow
    Participant

    @johnnytv 11841 wrote:

    I’m also confused by this line:
    “Evidence suggests that households who do not shop or pay bills on line can lose on average £560 per year. With Wrexham’s total households amounting to 57,029* at the last Census in 2011 that means Wrexham residents are missing out on just under £32 million extra into the County Borough.

    I am also confused by the £32 million Wrexham residents are missing out on.57,029 households @ £560 per year = £32 million.The Councils evidence is surmising that nobody in Wrexham buys anything on line.Another set of figures that do not add up as usual coming from WCBC.

    #66778

    99DylanJones
    Participant

    Glad others have felt the same as me– this is going to yet another fiasco. In view of potential county mergers – these are the types of schemes that the Welsh Government should freeze until the new structures are in place. This is not a party political issue but one of common sense.

    #66775

    pete
    Participant

    @johnnytv 11841 wrote:

    “Evidence suggests that households who do not shop or pay bills on line can lose on average £560 per year. With Wrexham’s total households amounting to 57,029* at the last Census in 2011 that means Wrexham residents are missing out on just under £32 million extra into the County Borough.

    How is WCBC’s new online system going to make this any better?
    AFAIK you don’t get a discount on your council tax for paying by direct debit, and there’s no extra charge for paying in cash at the payment office.

    @johnnytv 11841 wrote:

    The Council say “The new technology will provide a full range of on line services such as viewing your Council Tax account, reporting Streetscene issues or requesting a licence.

    There is already an online system for reporting Streetscene issues – it generally seems to be used as a great firewall of Wrexham to fob off members of the public when they report potholes or that the bins haven’t been collected.
    It seems you can already pay your council tax online, and apply for licenses online:
    WCBC: Pay It – Pay It… Making a payment to Wrexham Council? :confused:

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