Chair’s Briefing – Eclipse
As Members may be aware, Eclipse, the Case Management System used by Social Workers in Children’s Services has been on the Committee’s radar for a period of time.
In recent weeks, we have discussed Eclipse at the Children’s Standing Overview Group Meeting on 11th October and made a recommendation to Cabinet at the November 2021 Committee meeting.
On Wednesday 17th November, Cllr Rob Hannaford met with Rob Parkhouse, Head of Digital Transformation and others to put across Members concerns and hear about the work ongoing to Eclipse.
Key Discussion Points
- Cllr Rob Hannaford raised Members concerns with Eclipse including the well-known issues, the Council’s investment in the system and asked Officers for an update on the ongoing improvement work.
- Officers stated that all case management systems will have problems and the service wanted to work with the system we have rather than a costly or time-consuming change to another system.
- Ultimately, the system is fit for purpose and the vast majority works as it should do with no issues. Issues had arisen because updates had been made from the practitioners or user’s point of view and not from IT or system experts. That had led to more problems and a cycle of ‘tinkering’ with the system without reviewing the wider IT or system problems.
- Officers were aware of the issues and were working through them with the service to unpick and solve the issues. Officers from Children’s Services and Digital Transformation are working with the provider (OLM) to make intelligent solutions and reviewing changes with IT support.
- There is now a stronger, positive working relationship between Digital Transformation and Children’s Services on Eclipse via the Joint Governance Board.
- Officers thanked Members for continually raising Eclipse, their continued support and challenge and for allowing Officers the opportunity to come together to discuss the system and articulate the work ongoing.
- Councillor Hannaford was assured that officers from across the Council were working together on the system and that there was corporate ownership of the problems and solutions.
Officers agreed to circulate an update via a briefing note with example case studies to Members once the process mapping of practice was completed.
Cllr Rob Hannaford
Chair of the Children’s Scrutiny Committee
23rd November 2021
Appendix 1 – Meeting Information
Date and time: Wednesday 17th November 2021– 3:00pm – 3:30pm via MS Teams
Member attendees: Councillors Rob Hannaford (Chair)
Digital Transformation and Business Support: Rob Parkhouse (Head of Digital Transformation and Business Support) and Gary Dempster (Strategic Lead for Digital Transformation)
Children’s Services: Victoria Bendle (Senior Policy and Executive Support Officer)
Democratic Services and Scrutiny Secretariat: Charlie Fisher (Scrutiny Officer)