GoShift monthly update July 2018

July 2018 Update

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Welcome to this months update, it has been a busy few months for the GoShift team with workshops, updates to the portal and the QMS now up and running.

GoShift Workshop

We recently ran workshops in Palmerston North and Wellington to give our councils an insight into the shared QMS. Meeting together also gave us a change to give an update on the portal and get feedback from all. We’ll be out in the next couple of months to talk with council who weren’t able to attend the workshops. We’ve had some very positive feedback on the QMS even at this early stage, and councils can see there are going to be some great opportunities as the shared QMS is rolled out.

QMS Update

The QMS has been a big piece of work.  It has been divided into two parts:

  • a shared quality manual
  • shared quality services (such as auditing, competency assessments and training).

Development of the shared quality manual is complete and it is now available for implementation at councils.

What does a shared manual mean for Councils

  • Certainty the manual is fit for purpose and compliant to the regulations.  Representatives from eight councils and MBIE have developed the manual to ensure it is complaint to the regs and applicable to all NZ councils.
  • Improved processes through the development of best practise from participating councils. 
  • Improved customer service by creating a consistent customer experience between councils.
  • Reduced effort required at councils to maintain the manual.  The manual will be centrally maintained, and all changes will be compliant to the regs.  Local resource will still be required to manage local content, but effort required to keep up to date with changes required and maintain the manual will be reduced.
  • Added to the above, the manual will lay foundations and “open the door” to greater benefits of alignment, such as:
    • Reduced costs with the potential to reduce the cost of IANZ assessments, training and contractors
    • Opportunity to share resources for consenting, audits, competency assessments and training
    • Establish a unified approach to accreditation

Our focus over the next few months will be laying the foundation and implementing the manual at councils.  If you are interested in learning more about the shared manual, please contact  Kate.fox@wcc.govt.nz.

Portal Update

The portal has now been live for nearly 12 months. Portal volumes have been increasing month on month, and over 70% of applications made to our portal councils now come through the portal itself. This is a great level of uptake amongst customers and shows how easy the portal is to use.

The last few updates to the portal have introduced some very exciting new functionality. Most recently we have introduced a quick application process. This allows councils to put all their work through the portal, no matter the format it is presented to council. Council will benefit from being able to shift all work into a single workflow rather than managing both paper and online applications.

Horowhenua District Council are now live with the portal, and within the first month were already receiving over 75% of their consents online. This month they have been running a competition to incentivise the use of the portal amongst their customers. The competition is a great idea and we’re happy to welcome Horowhenua on board the portal.

Some of the other updates we have put in place since the start of the year:

  • We’ve made improvements around the control of documents, to ensure information is presented in the correct format. It’s still a work in progress but we are improving the document control every release.
  • Payments made via the portal can now be associated at any stage of a consent. This provides consistency for customers around how payments are made. We recently introduced the payment accepted date to the integration, which forms the basis of being able to automate the process. For example, if a payment is outstanding and the consent is sitting in the granted state, the consent can now be issued (and documents released to the end user), automatically upon payment.
  • Notifications are a key part of the process and we continue to evolve this part of the process to make it simpler and faster for both customers and councils.
  • We have been working hard to improve the collaboration function. A recent update was for owners to be automatically notified once an application is submitted, which creates transparency across everyone involved in the process. In the latest release we have also improved the visibility of collaborators for customers.

The portal continues to improve based on your feedback. We have no doubt that it is working, and we continue to get positive feedback about how it works. Getting Councils digital creates endless possibilities and is a key driver for GoShift.

Rebrand of GoShift

We have been working on a rebrand for the GoShift Initiative which we’ll be able to share with you soon. The timing is right to be doing this as we move into implementing our core products for councils.  We want to be clear that the initiative is seen as a key driver around consistency and collaboration and not an IT solution.

We have also started to shift the focus of the initiative from regional to national, so that our councils can achieve greater efficiency benefits. Despite this shift in focus, our core focus remains with GoShift councils and helping them adopt the portal and shared QMS.

We also know there is confusion about GoShift being part of the GoGet offering, and we want to reinforce our core principle of being system agnostic. Being system agnostic means we can offer to integrate the portal to any system, which provides a consistent experience for customers. Although we have a strong relationship with Master Business Systems because of their role in GoCouncil (our portal vendor), MBS themselves remain one of many vendors in this space.