Site key to council info plan

Rotorua District Council is pondering what information should be made public as it moves toward building its own website.

Rotorua District Council is pondering what information should be made public as it moves toward building its own website.

Although the council already runs individual websites for tourism, the local museum and business development in the region, there is no official RDC website.

Council IT manager Neven Hill says a major part of scoping the project is determining what will go on the site, which will be developed by Datacom by the end of the year.

“We want to evaluate what will be appropriate information for the public. Our aim is the right information, at the right place, at the right time.”

The council sees the site as part of its knowledge management plans. Knowledge management encompasses anything that is known to the council.

“Whether it’s in hard copy or in an employee’s head, we have to get that information down into some format that can be used by the organisation.”

Change management is the toughest task. “What we’ve got in electronic format now is easy because we just have to put that into a format that can be accessed. The harder part is getting buy-in from all the staff.”

The council is talking to focus groups about what they want on the system and what we will made available to the public.

Along the same lines, a request for proposals for a new document management system closed in mid June. Replies are now being evaluated.

“Again it’s all about managing what we have in print copy,” says Hill. “We have more than 30,000 property files and we have to keep most of that information for lengthy periods. There is also a GIS spatial database to contend with.”

The document management system would be integrated into the website. It could plug into the council’s other three sites.

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