Online success as more people access council’s virtual services - The Evesham Observer

Online success as more people access council’s virtual services

Evesham Editorial 2nd Jul, 2020   0

MORE people than ever are accessing online services at Worcestershire County Council which played a key role during lockdown.

The authority says it has been in a strong position during the pandemic due to its IT infrastructure and digital investment over the past two years.

Figures show more than a 250,000 people visited the council’s website in last month alone.

Coun Karen May, cabinet member with responsibility for transformation and commissioning, said: “Our investment in IT and digital over recent years has really paid off in 2020.

“We will continue to increase our online services and use technology to help more residents access services and enable our staff to effectively deliver them.”

Here2Help, the council’s Covid-19 community action campaign, has enabled residents to request and offer assistance.

It was developed so requests and offers can be mapped, matched and measured easily.

To date there have been 3,147 requests.

Digital systems have also been built to enable quick, effective distribution of essential goods and services including emergency food and PPE.

Council staff can request PPE and office equipment, share their skills so they can be redeployed and declare any medical needs.

Libraries have also transformed the way they work.

Nearly 50,000 e-books, audio books and e-magazines (47,703) have been downloaded from the council’s digital library service in the last three months – double the amount in the same period last year.

Coun Lucy Hodgson, cabinet member with communities, said: “I’m so pleased that the statistics are showing how popular our digital library hub has proven during lockdown.

“We really are a county of readers and it has been great to see that continue during the most testing of times.

“I would encourage people to continue using the service as we move forward with libraries re-opening, it is a fantastic resource available to our customers at any time.”

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