A year of work in progress – day 191

Day 191 – 6 November 2014

The Digital Durham team has been put forward for another award. I’m mentioning this because I started at world headquarters this morning. This time it is the Great Staff, Great Stuff awards. It’s not a ploy to sell tickets this time though as they are held entirely within the council. We have some stiff competition and at this stage we’ve only been nominated not shortlisted. Fingers crossed for the event on 1 December.

By the way, the journey in to work was pants. I tried to go the back way to avoid Team Valley but they’ve dug up every road.

The first draft of the video from Oktoberfest with Dyer engineering has also come through. It looks really good and thankfully most of my stuff has ended up on the virtual cutting room floor. There must have been fifteen seconds of me in total. I have a face for radio as they say and I should stick to the rivers and lakes that I’m used to.

The programme continues to go well with one hundred and twenty four cabinets live and the invitation to tender for phase two due back any day. There is an increased amount of communication with individual members of the public asking when they will be able to order theirs so the message is definitely getting out.

At County Hall I had a meeting with a local ICT company who wanted to introduce themselves and talk about future opportunities. I would like to place more business locally but only if they are the best providers. It’s the ‘Treaty of Rome’ and all that.  It was a useful discussion though and we agreed that I would go up and see them but probably after Christmas. We ended up talking about our roles in the North East ICT economy, women in ICT, apprentices, Dynamo and of course – Big Data.

Lee and I then had a meeting to talk about the County Durham Housing Group. We’ve been doing a lot of work to bring the service level agreements together for the three existing housing companies. I say we but you know what I mean. They’ve come together nicely. The external consultants came in to talk to us about our plans and what the future might look like. I was expecting more of a grilling yet it turned into a useful conversation about the levels of support we provided, our plans going forward and the management of risk. It is always good to engage, to talk and to listen.

Lee and I had a celebratory corn beef pie in the canteen.

Afterwards I went to New College in Durham to see Veronica. Most of our apprentices come from there (we have seven now) and I wanted to talk about our thoughts on creating a hub for SMEs and the Community and Voluntary sectors.

Hopefully more about this tomorrow.

Learning points for today: You can’t beat the traffic; Trim-Jeans were not a fashion statement (and best forgotten); it’s all about the service users and; if you want to change a business start by understanding the business.

Today’s enjoyment rating 8/10 – still tired.

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