Suffolk County Council and Ipswich Software Business IJYI Win National Technology Award

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Suffolk County Council (SCC) and IJYI, an Ipswich-based software business, have won one of the UK’s most important national IT awards.

This is for the development of a critical data gathering and reporting tool used during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In winning the award for Data Science Project of the Year at the 2022 UK IT Industry Awards, IJYI and SCC triumphed in a tough category that also included the likes of Thames Water and Openreach.

The CoronaWatch Dashboard was designed and developed by Suffolk County Council and IJYI to provide not only public access to critical COVID-19 information, but also in greater depth privately for key stakeholders, partners and decision-makers.

The award judges looked for the most outstanding IT project to deliver real value from data in terms of organisational performance, describing the Coronawatch project as an “agent for change”.

In addition to winning Data Science Project of the Year, IJYI and SCC were also finalists for the Public Sector Project of the Year award for their work on the Analysis of Additional Needs Tool (AANT) project.

The AANT process is designed to support the inclusion of children and young people across the county through cloud technology enabling access to consultation with an Educational Psychologist (EP).

This project highlights the level of innovation being undertaken within local councils and SCC specifically.

The AANT is being recognised as best practice with other Local Authorities who are now training their EPs to use this system too.

The UK IT Industry Awards are the largest and most well-known event in the technology industry calendar. Owned and operated by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT and Computing, the awards enjoy a level of professionalism and industry knowledge not seen at other shows. As a result, winners are celebrated for genuine success.

Commenting on the award, IJYI CEO, Kevin Linsell said:

“We are absolutely delighted for the Suffolk County Council and IJYI teams who worked together so effectively to deliver this pioneering public health technology tool. It also underlines the vital role that effective data collection, management and analysis play in modern society, and this is great recognition for a project effectively delivered at an important time.”

Councillor Andrew Reid, Suffolk County Council Cabinet Member for Public Health and Protection, said:

“Being able to share data effectively was of the utmost importance in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic locally. I’m so pleased that the extraordinary efforts of IJYI and Suffolk County Council in bringing together this innovative platform, at speed, and the impact this had on Suffolk’s response to the pandemic, has been recognised.”

Anna Crispe, Consultant in Public Health, Assistant Director, Knowledge, Intelligence & Evidence, Suffolk County Council, said:

“Our excellent collaboration with IJYI enabled us to benefit from a state of the art automated data platform, which combined with Suffolk County Council's expertise in epidemiology and analytics, revolutionised our public health intelligence capabilities, both now and for the future.”