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Digital Strategy & Impact Awards 2016 winners announced!

Every day, public sector organisations are taking creative and innovative steps to enhance the citizen experience. These are the organisations that bring digital communication tools to life, and are adapting to environments where budgets are tight and demands are increasing.

This year’s GovDelivery Digital Strategy & Impact Awards recognise excellence in creative use of digital tools, the ability to enhance public awareness and engagement, and dedication to transforming the citizen experience.

With a record-breaking number of entries, it wasn’t easy to choose this year’s award winners among the amazing work being done across the UK and Europe. After careful consideration, we are honoured to recognise 5 organisations for excellence in use of digital communications and 1 communicator making a marked difference in the way their organisation interacts and communicates with its service users, stakeholders and wider public.


Please join us in congratulating winners of this year’s Digital Strategy & Impact Awards:

Winners were announced at the 7th Annual GovDelivery Public Sector Communications Conference.


Capstone award winner: Stoke-on-Trent City Council

Stoke-on-Trent City Council set out to transform the citizen experience by implementing new engagement initiatives focused on supporting behavioural change. These improvements to Stoke’s digital toolkit include the introduction of a new email alerts service that attracted over 30,000 subscribers in 10 months, a new website interface which enables a range of easy online transactions for a range of critical tasks (whole new website goes live December 2016), an IT mentorship programme and ongoing infrastructure improvements. Their initiatives also led to a 94% increase in citizen “Online Accounts” – over 18,000 residents had created an account by April 2016 which helps to streamline government-to-citizen communications and provide a centre point for people to easily access the services they need.

Dan Cattanach

Communicator of the Year award winner: Dan Cattanach

Dan Cattanach, News and Media Manager, Bath and East Somerset Council

Dan is a creative media manager and uses digital communications in inventive ways. His approach to creating video content to engage citizens has been cited in best practice training packages delivered by independent consultants. He is responsible for “Love Your Vote” and “Give a Toss – Mark Your Cross” – videos which were disseminated on Twitter to boost voter registrations in Somerset, UK.

Southampton City Council

Creative Use of Digital Citizen Engagement award winner: Southampton City Council

For an innovative technology-based approach to publishing statutory notices and driving up citizen engagement with them. The council has transformed what has traditionally been a paper-based process for publishing statutory notices. In collaboration with a range of partners, Southampton has built a geo-smart open data online portal which integrates with its digital bulletins service, Stay Connected, to drive up engagement. It also holds the potential to deliver millions of pounds worth of savings for the public purse should the DCLG choose to use this as a future model. Southampton wrote in their entry: “For us, this project showed the power and potential of using integrated systems and text alerts to deliver key info to engaged audiences”.


Enhanced Public Awareness award winner: The UK Space Agency

The UK Space Agency set out to raise public awareness of astronaut Tim Peake’s mission to the International Space Station and inspire a new generation of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) students. With new digital platforms including a series of e-bulletins, and a microsite dedicated to learning resources, the campaign engaged around 10,000 schools and over a million young people, giving them a chance to explore career prospects in STEM fields.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Improved Citizen Involvement award winner: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (UK)

Ahead of the 2015 General Election, just 106,000 overseas British citizens were registered to vote. The Electoral Commission set an ambitious target to more than double the number of registered overseas voters in advance of the EU referendum. With a targeted and multi-channel global communications campaign, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office leveraged digital channels and monitored metrics for continual optimisation, supporting the Electoral Commission to get 258,246 British expats to register online between January 2016 and the registration deadline  – a 114% increase on 2015 figures.


Promoted & Transformed Services award winner: Nottinghamshire County Council

By implementing a digital portal for owners to register their vehicles to their address, the council has put digital measures in place to help reduce cross-border usage of recycling facilities. Out-of-county waste and recycling disposal is estimated to cost Nottinghamshire residents £1 million a year. With a multi-pronged approach to communications – focused on leveraging digital power – the council has already achieved over 60% of its online registration target for 2016/17 (84,000+ vehicles registered).

Look out for information about the 2017 Digital Strategy & Impact Awards – sign up for our e-updates >