Those of you who follow me on Twitter @shirleyayres will be aware that I ask lots of questions about the cost, outcomes and impact of publicly funded projects in the social sector. I am a strong believer that social media has an important role in promoting openness, transparency and accountability so I have decided to highlight examples of engagement (or not) via social media.
Submitting Freedom of Information (FoI) requests is a costly business both for the individual or organisation making the request and for the organisation responding. Could we make the process simpler and more cost effective by encouraging all organisations to make information about budgets, expenditure, outcomes and impact easily accessible on their websites and via social media? I would like to see all publicly funded organisations be more proactive in asking the public what information would help understanding of both the costs and value of projects, pilots, reports, research and toolkits.
For today an encouraging example of the responsiveness of the Health and Social Care Information Centre and a top tip for all organisations setting up a new Twitter account!
I received a prompt response via Direct Message and @hscic are happy for me to share the information they have provided.
“You asked about the cost of rebranding. We’re happy to be open. A budget of £90,000 was allocated for direct estate, ICT and branding costs associated with the name change. Spending is being strictly limited to core and purely functional activity. An internal project team has taken a practical, considered view on what needs to change to make the new name work, and a Steering Group, led by Sir Nick Partridge, one of HSCIC’s non-executive directors, has provided scrutiny and governance of the project plans, including the budget. I hope this helps!”
On a separate note if you are setting up a new Twitter account as part of a rebranding exercise it is worth taking note of the following!
This is the start of a series I will be writing about how social media is changing the way publicly funded organisations in the social sector communicate, interact and engage with the public.
I have lots more examples which I will be following up and please feel free to share your own examples of the good, the bad and the ugly!