The entire budget has not been spent, however the same budget will remain going forward.
Cassie O’Neil said that due to the Covid restrictions this year, we have spent less as there has not been any face to face training sessions, however Marsha and Layla will be looking at a well-rounded and wholesome training programme going forward and looking for feedback from Councillors before we put that in place.
Cllr Freeman said he realised that remote working will be coming to an end, however he has noticed that some of the Councillors have been struggling a little bit with remote working and he considers that there are simple little things which can be done to assist them. For example he said that he uses a headset which contains a mute function button on it which could help by giving some Members a simple headset device and showing them how to use it to make things run a little smoother.
Cllr Douris said he wasn’t sure that this particular request fell under the Member Development budget and therefore he would be leaving that matter for Member Support to decide.
Cllr Bhinder agreed with Cllr Freeman, he said he spoke to IT months ago and was given the option of either in-ear or headphones to trial and to use. He chose in-ear was he wanted something discreet and he thought it was fantastic as it not only had the mute function but also prevented feedback issues.
Cllr Douris said that it could be added to the list of training ideas going forward and then asked Cassie to comment.
Cassie O’Neil said that she is looking at this under allowances and ICT provision and is speaking with ICT to ask about the basic things needed. Cassie said that depending on resources, she has started looking at using MS Teams to record instructional videos to send out as little ‘bite sized’ training, especially as we will be looking at the use of electronic voting and therefore she will make sure that proper training is provided to everyone.
Cllr Griffiths arrived at 18:49pm, apologised for slight delay as she joined the meeting on time, however had experienced ICT issues and therefore had to reboot.
Cllr Griffiths agreed with Cllr Freeman that it would be a good idea for the additional ICT equipment however she said it should come out of the ICT budget and not the training budget. As part of the training programme she would like to see some 1-2-1 tuition given to some members from the ICT department, this would be more basic training including how to access Dennis for instance. Cllr Griffiths suggest that this would be good to start once we get back to being able to meet again.
Cassie O’Neil said that Member Support could look into providing such training as it was not technical high level ICT and therefore the ICT department do not generally provide resource for that. Setting up as 1-2-1 would be better as uptake on drop in sessions has not in the past been very great.
Action Point – Member Support Team to look into providing basic ICT for Members.
Cllr Douris said that often there is a system that you use all the time and then you will get a process that you use once a year.
Cllr Bhinder referred to things like virtual voting, we have Teams & Zoom, there have been many occasions that there has been webinars on Zoom, there are things that people don’t know. He also said that he has a little device that he plugs into his laptop to be able to see information displayed clearer on the larger screens than on the little laptop/tablet.
Cllr Douris said it maybe that we could put in something in Members News about the little device and the benefits it can have and that we would need to explore whether it could be provided by ICT or need to buy from Amazon.
Action Point – Member Support to liaise with ICT to find out whether the USB device can be provided or suggestions as to where Members can purchase the device.