Hampshire County Council
Policy and Resources Select Committee
14 October 2008
Hantsfile - Briefing paper
Report of the County Treasurer
Contact: Bevis Ingram, (01962) 84 7508; email@example.com
1.1 At its meeting on 15 July, members of the select Committee requested a briefing on `Hantsfile' the County Council's new Electronic Document and Record Management System. This note gives a very brief outline of the project.
1.1 Hantsfile is based on an IBM software package that has been specifically configured for use in Hampshire County Council to manage documents and records. It will be used for storing and searching for information in any standard format eg Word, spreadsheet, email, photo, e-forms, web pages, etc. Users will need to look in one place only, Hantsfile, to find filed information.
1.2 As well as being the place to store and retrieve all documents and records, Hantsfile will enable document management (deletion, review), management of document security, the process of drafting, approving and completing documents and easier and consistent sharing of documents and information across the Council and with partners.
2.1 Hantsfile is being implemented as the major part of the Information Management theme of the Transforming Through Technology Strategy. In essence the drivers for the project are
· The need to improve efficiency in the way that we work - reduced storage costs, productivity gains, use of office space
· The speed and ease with which people can access relevant information
· Improve quality of information
· Improve business intelligence - easier to achieve if we have comprehensive electronic storage of both structured and unstructured information
· Support for new ways of working
· Ability to meet legislative requirements, particularly in relation to records management (including Freedom of Information and Data Protection)
2.2 The quality of information affects our ability to provide the best possible services to the public, especially our care for vulnerable people. It is also information that allows managers to function as effectively as possible in managing service performance and efficiency.
2.3 Currently there is a lack of commonality in document and records management practices across the County Council. The main tool used is the I:\drive. This has many flaws or drawbacks, which is not surprising as it has now been in use for many years and technology has moved on. The main drawbacks are lack of search facility, difficulties in compliance with Data Protection and Freedom of Information requirements, lack of common approach to use (both within and across departments), lack of management of data and files leading to duplication, inefficiency, and storage of out of date files. Looking to the future, the I:\drive does not easily facilitate information sharing - particularly with partner organisations, it does not hold data about non electronic storage (or any "non I:\drive" files) or allow easy integration between different information repositories. The situation has been reached where the I:\drive is no longer fit for purpose and needs to be replaced.
3.1 The Project is being managed by a Team based in IT Services, with input from the Hampshire Record Office. The Project is being supervised by the Information Management Board, an officer Board made up of senior representatives of all departments together with a small number of information management specialists.
3.2 The Project is being run along two lines `horizontal' and `vertical'.
3.3 The `horizontal' implementation is the standard Hantsfile system that will be used by all Hantsnet users. This has been piloted by two sections in the Environment Department (about 100 users) since March/April this year. This standard system will be rolled out to about 10,000 users across the County Council over the next 36 months.
3.4 Experience of the Pilot has shown that staff are able to make significant time savings through using the system.
3.5 The `vertical' implementation will be a series of specialist information and records management systems that will use Hantsfile. The first vertical implementation is the single Electronic Social Care Record (ESCR), which is being piloted in Adults Services. Further vertical implementations are being identified and are likely to include specialist areas such as management of HR/personnel records.
4.1 Hantsfile is major back office system that will enable business change through enabling new ways of working. It will also enable significant time efficiencies to be achieved by users through more efficient use of information and documents.