Agenda and minutes

Organisation Scrutiny Committee - Tuesday, 1st February, 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, District Council Offices, Mill Lane, Wingerworth, Chesterfield S42 6NG.

Contact: Damon Stanton  01246 217011

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


An apology for absence had been received from Councillor D Ruff.



Declarations of Interest

Members are requested to declare the existence and nature of any disclosable pecuniary interests and/or other interests, not already on their register of interests, in any item on the agenda and withdraw from the meeting at the appropriate time.


Members were requested to declare the existence and nature of any disclosable pecuniary interest and/or other interest, not already on their register of interests, in any item on the agenda and withdraw from the meeting at the appropriate time.


Councillor J Funnell declared that he was a trustee at Citizens Advice.



Minutes of Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 317 KB

To approve as a correct record and the Chair to sign the Minutes of the Organisation Scrutiny Committee held on 7 December 2021.


RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the previous meeting of the Organisation Scrutiny Committee held on 7 December 2021 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.



Scrutiny Review



·     10.00 am - Gillian Sladen (CEO Citizens’ Advice NED) and Liz Holt (CA Mid Mercia)  

·     10.30 am - David Vickers and Amar Bashir


Members conducted a series of interviews with Officers and representatives from Citizens Advice as part of their Scrutiny Review into ICT and Transformation.


Interview One with Citizens Advice


The Committee welcomed Gillian Sladen (CEO of NED Citizens’ Advice) and Liz Holt (CA Mid Mercia) to the meeting to discuss the Digital Connect Project which was provided by Citizens’ Advice and delivered by CA Mid Mercia).


Members heard that the pandemic had highlighted a digital divide between generations and communities. Because of this, a digital skills project had been established to help level up and strengthen skills in the community, reduce digital exclusion, reduce social isolation and have a positive impact on mental health. Four Derbyshire Citizens Advice organisations were collaborating on a number of projects and had been able to establish good referral pathways.


The Committee was informed that the project had supported clients over the age of 50 throughout North East Derbyshire through a person centred 1:1 approach that included a tablet loaning service.


The Representatives stated that 131 face to face sessions had been completed and that a majority of referrals to the project had been self-referrals. Members heard that 100% of clients felt more confident after the sessions and 89% of clients had expressed reduced social isolation and increased connectivity. There were also plans to extend its community based venues to Killamarsh, Dronfield and Holmewood.


Members discussed the Digital Connect Project at length and enquired as to the level of funding that the project received. Members heard that the project received £59,903 of funding and that more volunteers were needed so that more people could be supported. The Strategic Partnership Coordinator stated that they would look into the possibility of advertising the project within the next addition of the Council magazine.


Members invited Citizens Advice to attend local residents groups and meetings so that they could promote the project.


The Strategic Partnership Coordinator clarified the Council’s relationship with Citizens Advice for Committee and that the project was not funded by the Council.


Members noted that DCC Library Services could offer support completing online forms and Rykneld also provided a certain level of support to their residents.


Interview Two with the Communications Marketing & Design Manager and the Improvement Officer


1. What Progress has been made towards full digital service?

The Communications, Marketing & Design Manager informed Members that the Council’s online channels had been increasing. At the time of the meeting, 7,500 residents had signed up to receive emails from the Council. This included 4000 residents that had signed up to receive email updates on bin collections.


Committee also heard that the Communications Team assisted other departments and services to deliver new digital initiatives.


The Improvement Officer told Committee that Equalities were constantly improving services and making them more digitally accessible. This included the addition of a number of virtual forms such as the Reasonable Adjustments and Hate Crime forms. Digital services were promoted across a number of channels.


Members discussed the Interviewees responses and sought assurances that  ...  view the full minutes text for item OSC/50/21-22


Transformation Programme Update

To consider progress against the Action Plan – including WFH and the impacts of the Pandemic – Lee Hickin, Managing Director and Matt Broughton, Director of Transformation


The Director of Transformation provided an update on the Transformation Programme.


Members discussed the presentation at length. They heard that the overall cost of digital transformation was difficult to quantify, and often savings could take a number of years to materialise.


Committee enquired as to where the funding would come from if they desired to take a more proactive role in bringing digital skills to the community. They heard that this could be funded through the Partnership Team and delivered through Citizens Advice. It was noted that digital Council services had been demonstrated to residents at events and a marketing campaign was due to begin that would help with this. The Officer recognised that more work needed to be done to promote the digital services.


The Officer reassured Members that any disabilities and additional needs would be taken into account as the Council began to consider new working arrangements and Office layouts for staff.


Members discussed the increased cost of ICT infrastructure and heard that these improvements were made through service areas putting in an appropriate business case and normal budget processes.



Forward Plan of Executive Decisions

To consider the Forward Plan of Executive Decisions.  The most up-to-date Forward Plan of Executive Decisions can be accessed via the following link:




RESOLVED – That the forward plan of Executive Decisions be noted.



Work Programme pdf icon PDF 181 KB

To consider the Work Programme for the Organisation Scrutiny Committee 2021/22 and review the proposed workload.


RESOLVED – That the Work Programme be noted.



Additional Urgent Items

To consider any other matter which the Chair of the meeting is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency.


There were no urgent items discussed at this meeting.



Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Organisation Scrutiny Committee is scheduled to take place on Tuesday 29 March 2022 at 10.00 am. 


The next meeting of the Organisation Scrutiny Committee will be held on 29 March 2022 at 10am.



Venue for Next Meeting

To determine whether the next meeting be held formally (in person) at Mill Lane or informally via virtual conference call.


The next meeting of the Organisation Scrutiny Committee will be held in the Council Chamber, Mill Lane.