Friday

A number of IP 'Phones in the Mayor's office were not working, this morning, after a software upgrade, last night.

Why it is that from an infrastructure of several thousand devices, any problems always seem to manifest in the most important areas is beyond me! We eventually found that one 'phone, which was camped-on/ rerouted or connected to all the others that were not working, seemed to be causing the fault, and everything sprang into life when we deleted the connections. However, the arrangement worked OK before the upgrade...

I met with a number of colleagues to discuss where we are with Smart Card technologies. Going back six or seven years, Newham Council was a pioneer in the technology, attracting a lot of attention for some innovative work – but we were unable to make the case for sustaining developments – such as cashless catering in schools, class registration, Library & Leisure membership – and put the work into suspense a few years back.

There are now a lot of activities involving, or potentially involving, new Smart Card developments in and around Newham, including:

  • Building 1000 access, network log-on and print authorisation.
  • Links with Visa and Oyster.
  • Social Services payments/ devolved budgets.
  • Contact Point authentication.
  • Waltham Forest's replacement of All-Pay with Smart Cards.
  • National ID Card & N3.
  • Other synergies with pan-London developments.

I most certainly don't want to launch a new project, without a strong sponsor, to compete for resources with all the other demands on our service – but neither do I want to waste effort previously expended, if not necessary, or miss-out on opportunities that may be presenting themselves.

We therefore agreed to produce a short Briefing Note/ Situation Report to raise awareness, and to see whether any suitable business cases came forward.

I met with Shane and Geoff to review the ICT Communications Plan, which is coming along very nicely. This will be presented at our forthcoming ICT Away Days, and assimilated into the new Strategy.

Geoff and I met with HR to consider a number of issues, including the TUPE process relating to the wind-up of Caboodle Services.


Just before leaving for the day, I received a reply from the Cabinet Office, saying they'd be pleased to meet.