A perfect match of experts for Stad Hasselt
The city of Hasselt, the capital of Limburg, is currently in a digital transformation of their internal services. They do this by focusing strongly on innovation, technology and important digital developments.
The challenge: temporary reinforcement for various digitization projects
The city of Hasselt is currently working on various digitization projects for internal and external use. Because of the corona crisis more and more things have to be done digitally via their website. This gives these digitization projects a higher priority and makes it necessary to deliver them as quickly as possible.
The city has an ambitious digital strategy, with the aim of being able to serve all their citizens ‘24/7’, so that it is no longer necessary for them to come to city hall every time. To replace some colleagues and to strengthen teams that could quickly participate in these projects, they looked for temporary reinforcements for their existing teams.
However, the city did not simply look for consultants to strengthen their projects. They found it extremely important to find the right match, both on a technical and personal level. During their search they came into contact with ACA IT-Solutions. During the application procedure we indicated that we wanted to meet their need for extra capacity of experts.
Our solution: the right match with the right expertise and a personal connection
When filling out the profiles, we do not only focus on a match in terms of technical knowledge and personality, but want to build a long-term relationship with our customers. It was therefore extremely important during the discussions to find out exactly what the city of Hasselt is looking for, and whether we can offer this expertise. After we were sure that we could offer a qualitative match, our experts joined the teams at the city of Hasselt. What was supposed to be only a temporary solution, eventually led to a long collaboration.
Working on various digitization projects
Because of our knowledge, expertise and drive our people are the perfect match for their existing teams. At the moment, our experts are part of five different digitization projects at the city of Hasselt.
Project 1: Leasure counter
The goal of the first project is to bring reservations, ticket sales, event management and associated benefits together in one platform. This platform will subsequently be integrated into the website of the city of Hasselt.
To achieve this, our project manager brought together all stakeholders in this project, namely the departments involved in the city of Hasselt. The requirements and the ‘pains & gains’ were collected on the basis of interactive working groups. We create these working groups to let everyone step outside their role and service and to actively help them think about the needs and solutions of another service in the city of Hasselt.
We used Confluence to document these sessions and Jira to give it more structure and create stories (or epics). We then logically classified these stories with story mapping, and we checked whether each step contained enough stories. This way, we can make sure that all needs are always covered.
Project 2: Digital signatures
ACA also works on a project for a renewed solution for digital signatures. At the moment, the city uses two different signatureplatforms and the majority of documents are still signed manually. The goal of this project was on the one hand to work with one platform, and to allow as many other services as possible to use the platform for digital signing in the short term.
As a first step, we conducted a market research to see which tools exist and which ones best suit the use of the city of Hasselt. After this research, we concluded that we already had experience and expertise with some tools from our market research. Because of the good match with the needs of the city of Hasselt, combined with our own experiences, the city opted for the tools we proposed, of course substantiated by the necessary pros and cons.
Thanks to the fast and clear communication on both sides, we were able to achieve a good result in a short time. Through direct contact with the mayor's office and the general manager's secretariat, we were able to respond quickly. Thanks to this communication, we were able to quickly find out which documents from which services are the largest bulk for signatures.
Project 3: Digitization of grant applications
Many citizens, clubs and associations rely on subsidies from the city of Hasselt. At the moment, this process is not yet digital or automatic. In order to digitize the application for grants, it was first examined which applications can be made and which processes are set in motion as a result.
Our project manager has mapped all these processes and presented possible options. After all, thanks to workshops with stakeholders, we were able to accurately record all processes and associated requirements. This means that the digitization itself can now start smoothly.
Project 4: Topdesk for notification management
The city of Hasselt uses the Topdesk application for internal and external notification management. This application is currently still running in their own data center. In time, the city wants to migrate the application to the cloud. The ACA project manager is making all the preparations for this.
For this migration to the cloud, the current implementation of TopDesk needs to be mapped out. Some existing integrations also need to be rewritten. After rewriting these integrations, the cloud migration can begin.
It is also the intention that all complaints and reports from both the residents of the city of Hasselt and the internal employees are submitted to TopDesk. At the moment, each internal service still has its own way of working, but the intention is to standardize this operation together with the team.
Project 5: Online appointments for residential care centers
Due to COVID-19, the city of Hasselt sometimes had to switch quickly and provide digital solutions. For example, our project manager, together with the team on site, had to quickly ensure that appointments for visits in two Hasselt residential care centers can be made online.
The current appointment system ran via Excel, which was not always clear from an organizational point of view. The spread of the coronavirus quickly overloaded the reception, which registered all visits manually in Excel.
The city of Hasselt was looking for a well-known application that could be used quickly internally. This is how the team arrived at the Q-Matic application, which is already being used to make appointments at city hall. After elaborating the specific requirements (taking into account the specific target group), we were able to develop a new specific registration flow for the residential care centers in the short term. Visitors can now schedule, change or cancel an appointment online. The system automatically takes into account a maximum number of visitors allowed per time slot. In this way we have been able to realize a solution that is organizationally a lot clearer and easier to work with.
A unique approach: user stories
Our people brought a breath of fresh air to the existing teams at the city of Hasselt through a few methods that we have been using in projects at ACA for years. What stood out for the teams at the city of Hasselt is the way in which our people work together with stakeholders during preparations based on user stories. User stories are wishes or requirements of the users that need to be improved and/or solved. These are mapped out on the basis of sessions with the various stakeholders and can subsequently be used and validated. The city of Hasselt wants to extend this method internally in their own projects and teams.
Working together with ACA Group runs very smoothly. ACA's consultants are passionate and pick things up right away. You put a problem in their hands and they always come up with a concrete solution quickly. You can always count on them. What immediately struck us is that they have a very broad technical knowledge and come with innovative solutions.— Willem Heirman, Afdelingshoofd applicaties en data, Stad Hasselt at Stad Hasselt
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