Our digital wiz Simon is back on the blog this Monday morning, and focusing this…


Our digital wiz Simon is back on the blog this Monday morning, and focusing this week’s blog on how talking a load of rubbish can give you real insight, as he unites forces with our Waste Services team…


One of my fellow bloggers took the risk of losing his readership last week writing about parking. I’m definitely going to try and trump him this week with this rubbish blog, as I talk about waste services.

For the past two weeks I’ve been part of a project with Digital and other teams that has seen us temporarily relocated from our base in Worthing Town Hall to Environmental Services in Commerce Way, Lancing. We are starting the journey to improve the way customers interact with the Waste service over the next three months. It’s a great opportunity to meet and work with some new people and learn about another vital council service. We’ve also loved our hot lunches at TukTuk Thai café round the corner.

Co-locating the project team right into the heart of the service is a new approach for us. It has already proved invaluable with discovering the intricacies of what they do. Some of this was highlighted when we got the chance to look at the digital systems on-board the £4m fleet of new waste trucks.

I think most of us were surprised at how many critical functions a driver had to concentrate on during their round – keeping their team safe behind the truck via CCTV; monitoring bikes and pedestrians with mirrors; logging each household that didn’t put their bin out; and actually driving the collection round! It definitely gives you a respect for other people’s jobs.

With over 60,000 clinical waste collections each year, our first task is to create an easier way for customers to register for the service and alter their collection frequency. The only way we can create successful services is by working with our customers to really understand their needs. So that’s exactly what we have been doing, by reaching out to ask questions; creating a customer feedback group; and testing ideas with them. We call this Customer Centred Design. The insight data has backed up the development of a web service that will run in addition to the existing telephone service. We aim to launch the first version in early July so you’ll be hearing more about it in a future blog I’m sure.

Next week I’ll be talking about our planned IT disaster recovery weekend and ways to make the councils more resilient …

Photo: Simon (centre) in front of one our our waste and recycling trucks, with Jean and Kristy to the right