Fractal portals

From this week’s e-Government Bulletin:

"Your London", due to go live in April, is to be aimed at Londoners, businesses and visitors to the capital and will provide access to public service information from the 33 London boroughs and other London- specific agencies including NHS bodies, the Greater London Authority and Transport for London.

"There is a need for a single portal – the idea of having ‘one vision, one portal’ is important," Simon Norbury, head of IT at Westminster City Council, told E-Government Bulletin this week. He said when competing for funding against big cities such as Barcelona for example, the portal could have an important promotional role to play.

But Norbury said he had some concerns over possible pitfalls. "If the signposting [from the portal back to council sites] isn’t very good we could start to lose customers," he said. "When people want to do business, they want to do it with us, not the London portal."

Norbury is also concerned about the work involved for councils in maintaining up-to-date information on the portal, a lot of which will be managed by individual boroughs.

Any analogy in this with orange-coloured sites we know and love is left as an exercise for the reader.

Comments

  1. I am beginning to remember with great affection the web ‘portal’ proposed by the DTI to deliver employment information regarding employer and employee rights and responsibilities etc called ‘chameleon’. Clue is in the name: it wasn’t going to be orange, blue or pink, it wasn’t going to to be launched with fanfare and congratulations, in fact it wasn’t going to ‘exist’ at all – it was simply going to be an up to date source of correct information that could be synicated to anywhere where relevant customers ALREADY WERE (genius!). Not suggesting this is the right answer for ‘Your London’ but we could all do with remembering that sometimes, the best way to speak to customers, is to go to them

  2. possibly when the chameleon has had its day as I haven’t heard of it for a while and can’t find any reference on the dti site – which perhaps bodes less well for the ‘invisible’ approach to content distribution. But Scz’s reference to Tiger reminds me that this was one of the more useful set of existing functionality that we looked into when considering a certain Money Franchise customer proposition some time ago – certainly it had by far the most useful maternity entitlement/pay calculator – and might be worth ensuring that the current individuals responsible for Money are aware of it.

  3. good idea Lara I’ll feed in. Have you got any tips on getting them to take the cheese out of their ears (reference to Allo Allo) and listen and collaborate.
    Sorry childish of me but our friends on that particular franchise are absorbing a disproportionate amount of resource in getting them to listen and act upon our steers and advice.
    Dominik and I are continuing on 2 fronts (Good cop bad cop amongst other tried and tested routines). We are starting to see some glimmer of light ahead (optimism score there of 6).

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