New Updates on the Network Infrastructure Hub! 

Check out the latest updates to our infrastructure work on the Network Infrastructure Hub.

Check out the latest updates on the Network Infrastructure Programme, including: upcoming Charitylog user group sessions and the recently updated user guide; progress and plans for the implementation and development of the Salesforce solution; and the next TES Customer Day for the Microsoft Dynamics Business Central 365 finance system.

New Updates on the Network Infrastructure Hub! 

Check out the latest updates to our infrastructure work on the Network Infrastructure Hub.

Check out the latest updates on the Network Infrastructure Programme, including upcoming Charitylog training dates and how the new ‘Innovation Hub’ is enabling partners to shape developments in the Salesforce solution. You can also find out about new options to collaborate and share project and ongoing costs for the Microsoft Dynamics Business Central 365 finance system – including the latest Partners to adopted it, plus your invitation to the TES Customer Day.

New Updates on the Network Infrastructure Hub! 

There’s a whole host of recent updates to the Network Infrastructure Hub, including some upcoming events – take a look at all the changes below.

Check out the latest updates on the Network Infrastructure Programme, including: how Partners are utilising Salesforce (plus a short demo video); new Charitylog training dates and an overview of the recent user groups; an invitation for Partners to adopt the Microsoft Dynamics Business Central 365 finance system plus a new trial environment; and an update on the Brand Partner Portal rollout.

Brand Partner Portal update: A summary of the 3 webinars and a reminder to sign up for the rollout

This Brand Partner Portal update gives a summary of our three recently held webinars, along with their recordings, and explains how you can prepare for the upcoming rollout.

We recently held 3 comprehensive webinars for Age UK Partners to find out how you will use the Brand Partner Portal, how it integrates into your websites, and what you need to do in preparing for your upcoming rollout. If you haven’t already, we encourage you to request your login details and sign up to your preferred rollout window. Read on to see what we covered in each webinar, watch the recordings, and find out how you can sign up to your preferred rollout window.

First Webinar – Introduction to the Brand Partner Portal

In this first webinar, the team demonstrated the portal, talked you through each stage of the onboarding process and the individual website deployments across the network.

What was covered?
  • Introduction
  • Current Status of the websites
  • The Tool – Brand Partner Portal
  • Outcome – Integrated websites
  • Rollout process
  • Next steps
  • Resources and support available
  • Q&A

Second Webinar – The Step-by-Step Journey of Using the Portal

At the second webinar, we refreshed on the first webinar and the integration of your current website with the portal, demonstrated the journey of using the portal, and allowed ample time for questions which were all answered before conclusion.

What was covered?
  • Introduction
  • Step-by-step journey for information entry
  • Other Portal areas
    1. I&A Integration
    2. Quality Assurance Framework
  • Q&A

Third Webinar – Rationalising your Data ready for the Portal

At the recent third and final webinar before the rollout, we focused on providing you with all the resources and information for your deployment process. There was an outline and introduction to all the teams you will work with at each part of the deployment process.

What was covered?
  • Introduction 
  • Process
    • Portal Access (User Logins & Sprint Window Selection)
    • Content (Content Check, Amendments & Sign-off)
    • Website (Portal/ Website Integration – Live)
  • Resources
  • Next Steps
  • Q&A

What to do now

To get your Brand Partner Portal access, please email portalaccess@ageuk.org.uk to get a log in and sign up to one of the 4 Sprint windows for the Portal (below).

These 4 rollout windows will run:
  • September 2021 – October 2021
  • December 2021 – January 2022
  • March 2022 – April 2022
  • June 2022 – July 2022

Guides and Resources

The Digital Hub is the home for all the guidance and information on using the portal and website, we will continue updating it to make it relevant to your needs.

Network Infrastructure Update: Upcoming Charitylog training sessions and user groups

The Network Infrastructure Team are holding a series of training sessions and user groups on Charitylog over the next few months. Find out full details including how to book your place.

In response to the Charitylog training survey completed by Brand Partners in recent months, Dizions (the creators of Charitylog) are holding a number of training sessions in September and October. We are also holding the next series of user group meetings in September. Click here for more information, including how to book your place at the training sessions or user groups.

Network Infrastructure Programme update on the Brand Partner Portal

Find out the latest news from the Network Infrastructure Programme’s Brand Partner Portal work.

This latest Network Infrastructure Programme update takes a look at how the work on the Brand Partner Portal is progressing. The Brand Partner Portal aims to improve the ways in which Local Age UKs can interact with Age UK and communicate information about their Services, Activities & Events and Shops on their websites. Click here to read the latest updates and our upcoming webinars about the Brand Partner Portal.

Places still available for accounting systems demo with Microsoft partner TES

There are still places available at this week’s live demo of Dynamics 365 Business Central accounting software.

There are still places available at this week’s live demo of Dynamics 365 Business Central accounting software. Microsoft partner TES will tell us about how they are working with the network, demonstrate the accounting software and answer any questions you may have. The demo session is taking place on Teams on Friday 11th December from 14:30 – 16:00. To book your place, or to arrange a private demo please email: NetworkInfrastructure@ageuk.org.uk.

To find out more about the Accounting Systems project as part of our Network Infrastructure work, please click here.

Help shape the HR Systems project!

Age UK’s Network Infrastructure Programme want to hear how they can best support Partners’ HR systems and functions.

HR is a core requirement for any organisation, however we don’t have a clear understanding of the requirements and needs of Partners for your HR systems and functions. We need your help to understand what your requirements are, so that the Network Infrastructure Programme can support Partners to meet them. If you would like to share your experiences, please get in touch with us at networkinfrastructure@ageuk.org.uk.

The Network Infrastructure Programme works with partners across the network to improve the back-office systems, functions and supplier relationships that support the delivery of services to older people in a high quality, effective, efficient, and sustainable manner. To find out more, please visit the Network Infrastructure Hub.

Network Infrastructure Blog #1 – “Change is inevitable! Deal with it”

Steve Billot explains his role within the Network Infrastructure Programme and outlines how local Age UKs can get involved.

In the first of our regular blogs from the Network Infrastructure Programme, Steve Billot explains how the Network Infrastructure Programme formed and how local Age UKs can get involved. If you haven’t already, please first take a look at the intro post by Pam Creaven, Services & Partnership Affairs Director which introduces the Network Infrastructure Programme.

“Change is inevitable! Deal with it!”

There are many sayings about why we all resist change which you will have heard such as “a leopard never changes its spots”. But the world is full of constant change, no more so than now. I want to set the scene on the change that faces the Age UK network, what we have been doing to understand it and how we now plan to help with that change over the coming months and years.

Who am I and why am I here? I was invited by the senior team at Age UK to help to understand the diverse way in which the network operates its support structures, accounts, HR, IT etc and to look for common ways in which they could all be improved. That has led to over 60 visits to local partners from Cornwall to Northumberland, West Wales to Norfolk. I have been able to see how you deliver phenomenal local support with staff and volunteers but also to understand the challenges we have as we all try to do the best we can with increasingly limited local resources.

These visits together with a close interaction with many colleagues at Age UK national have allowed us to build up a pool of knowledge that we now want to share and use to help the network improve its infrastructure by learning from each other. That work was known as ‘Project Sophie’ and has now been brought together with a number of other projects and initiatives with the network, into the Network Infrastructure Programme.

The Programme has a steering group with representatives from the network and we will communicate with you regularly via this blog and our newly established WordPress site called the ‘Network Infrastructure Hub’.

We really need your help. You will be solving problems every day and we want to know about the problems and the solutions so we can share them as much as possible.  We will be setting up many user groups to work more collaboratively and we will tell you all about the initiatives we are working on with you. Please follow the blog  and visit the Network Infrastructure Hub to find out about each project and how you can get involved. This is very much a two-way exercise, so all feedback is really appreciated.

You will get more details in the next few blogs on specific examples we are working on and how you can get involved. In my next blog I will look at the opportunities around using our accounting systems in a better way.

Finally – why the strange title to this first blog.  I have for many years worked with the Law Society and its regulator helping them to train the legal sector which is notoriously reluctant to change. At one lecture a colleague put up the following picture:

At a conference, a colleague put up this picture of a vending machine with a sticky note saying “Not accepting change, Thx”.  Someone responds underneath with their own note saying “Change is inevitable! Deal with it”.

In this Covid-led world, change is truly inevitable, and we now must deal with it. Working together we can do that more effectively than just standing back and kicking the machine in the hope it gives us our coins back.

Thanks,

Steve Billot

To contact the Network Infrastructure Programme Team, please email: networkinfrastructure@ageuk.org.uk