I hope this finds everyone safe and well.
I wanted to start this mid year edition with a story (do feel free to skip down to the relevant bits further down!):
As a, now relatively long standing, dweller of Devon I would like to consider myself to have transcended what the more obstreperous fellow county dwellers term a “grockle” – I’m unsure of the requisite volume of sand which must have passed through the glass to no longer qualify for this uncharitable epithet, but 6 years (and 2 months) is perhaps at least a decent start. I mention this as – with family in tow – we decided to both embrace the zeitgeist and aim at both a domestic break and to further the ‘west country dweller cool vibe’ (unsure if this is actually a thing, but you know what I mean) and venture further West into the even more aspirational Cornwall. How could this be better – said we – but to enjoy this sojourn via a beach side camp site and in particular to arrive, dwell and return in one of Germany’s famous camper vans (hired for the long weekend at no small cost).
Now, far be it from me to claim that my scant experience of travel, breaks, holidays and all other forms of just not being at home (including associated levels of comfort, relaxation and convenience) constitutes anything worthy of note, nor do I intent any disrespect to (what seemed to be most of the countries inhabitants) arriving in this corner of the UK in every possible form of 2 and 4 wheeled box. However, despite sunny skies, a generous ‘pitch’, a fine view of the azure seas and beautiful white sandy cornish beaches but a bucket and spades throw away, I can report that camping may be one of the most extreme and oversold forms of life’s tortures.
What level of faffery is it when cargo must be unloaded before access to any form of convenience (by which i mean cooker, sink…seating!?) can be accessed. A slight undulation in our ‘spot’ providing tantamount to a slide in the ‘upstairs’ (pop up roof) bedroom – occupied by a 7 year old in a sleeping bag (armed with ‘camping lamp’) – the appearance of which multiple times during the evening, night and early hours – as she maneuvered downhill towards a potential head injury courtesy of the absence of bedroom floor immediately above the driver and passenger seats – was akin to being invaded by an oversized glow worm. The downstairs ‘bed’ – once fashioned – was not a comfortable location for repose (think 4 hours rest for the weekend) and – of course – circa 3 am (freezing – couldn’t figure the heating out) it was necessary to embark on the 17 mile walk to the ablution block. Up at a more reasonable description of ‘the morning’ to fall out through the sliding door, blinking into the sunshine to wonder 2 things:
1 – Had I somehow slipped in Dante’s previously unknown 9th circle of hell?
2 – How many things do I now need to move, slide, push and swear at before I can make coffee!?!
So, dear reader, in my humble estimation Hotels have been invented (and have had a pretty miserable and torrid 18 months), so go support them.
You may also wonder what any of this has to do with Oscar, Public Sector data and all of the other things that this electronic periodical is for. Well, nothing. I had started intending to relay a brief whimsical anecdote and the word count now suggests an essay. My apologies, but the process has at least been cathartic.
Now, on to the usual things:
Following the May elections much change – of course – as a result of 2 years worth of councillor elections taking place. This affected 145 Councils in England and around 5000 seats. Also taking place are 15 Local Authority and 9 Combined Authority Mayoral elections. As usual (and thanks to the amazing Local Govt team), all postholder changes were made before the end of May and the allocation of leadership and cabinet/committee functions is well under way (Ed: Stop the presses – literally just heard from the LG team and can confirm all the Leaders have now been updated for the election councils)
An interesting pop fact from the Local Elections:
There were 2159 newly elected Councillors this time – one of the highest %’s of change we’ve seen across local election cycles at some 44%
We have also updated our Live Local Authority Political Analysis (LAPA) report to accommodate the new election year and add another chunk of data to the historical/time series of changes by party.
There were also 41 PCC Elections in England and Wales, 60 Seats elevated to the Welsh Senedd Elections and 129 Regional and Constituency Seats across the Scottish Government. These have also all been updated (as well as the recent by-election – and a couple more of these are to come).
For those that are into their mapping/G.I.S. bits and pieces, there were a significant number of wards (and ward code) changes to note – these have now also been updated following an update on our Geo data feeds. We are also keeping an eye on the proposed 2023 revisions to national Constituencies areas. Details of which can be seen here courtesy of the Beeb.
Outside of elected data, research continues along the usual lines. Items of note here are as follows:
MAT’s – our coverage of senior personnel and checking of School/group structures continues. It’s worth noting there are now nearly 10,000 (a third of all schools) Academies across the UK.
STP/ICS – the transitions continue and we have completed a review of the current organisations and significant post holders. These will continue to develop and grow as it’s suggested they will be replacing CCG’s potentially as early as next year.
Housing Associations – we have an ongoing review into the group structures of Housing Associations with a view to as closely as possible mirror the regulatory data versions of organisations and groups with our own. This is particularly important as we are now mapping housing stock and type to local authority areas. Regular users of this dataset will see frequent changes across the file.
As ever, we encourage all users with current licenses to download the latest data as frequently as possible. The levels of organisational and post holder updates/changes across the board since 1st of April 2021 are shown in the table below:
As part of our continued focus on data coverage and accuracy, we’re pleased to announce two new members to the Education and Healthcare team this end:
Jenni Moorhouse – Research Officer
Candice Powell – Research Officer
A very warm welcome to them both and we’re very pleased they chose to be with us. They are both already busy on the system and hopefully those out there that regularly liaise with the research team will get chance to say “hello” in due course.
As we continue to try and leverage Public and regulatory data to add value and colour to the core Oscar database, we now have a number of new metric and geographic data points available for subscribers to include in their downloads. Details of which can be seen here in the second table. To discuss adding any of these to your subscriptions, or if you have any specific requirements, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
The ‘big’ news alluded to in the previous edition is coming soon. We are working very hard (Management, Dev and Research) to put together our new all encompassing platform and can’t wait to share details with you. If anyone out there would like to be involved with the beta testing, please get in touch and we’ll add you to the list.
We held our first (virtual) company awards ceremony this month – henceforth referred to as “The Oscars” – something we will be doing every 6 months to recognise general greatness for those that are just generally great (it’s quite a broad category).
Which saw three of our lovely workers receive an award – pictures below (no expense has been spared with these):
|The first award went to Richard Cunliffe|
This is for general sales excellence, brilliant customer service and being an all round nice guy. He has passed 3 years this year with us and has increased his sales and accounts by over 75% last year and is already well ahead again this year.
The second award went to Eirian Evans
I can’t not start with the fact that Eirian has not had a day off in 11 years!! – that must be some kind of record. Turning up isn’t enough on it’s own of course, she’s also brilliant on the NHS database, especially the Trusts and we’d be rather lost without her knowledge of structures, functions and organisations across Secondary Care.
The final award went to Nicola Isaats
Nicola has been with us Oscar since 2010 and was with Keystroke for 6 years before that. Making her the longest serving person from that side and one of the longest across the team – 17 years and counting! She has been a total stalwart on the Local Government database, working tirelessly with Alison and John on the political and management side and in particular this year having checked and updated more records in the past 6 months than anyone else.
Congratulations to them and that about wraps it up for another 2 months. Here’s to freedom when it arrives and meantime, keep safe and well!
James and team at Oscar
0845 226 3044