I’m the Information Asset Owner for commercial services contracts. Along with my colleague, Eileen Morrison, we manage the Business Development Fulfilment Team (BDFT). We look after a team of 17, responsible for the fulfilment of all commercial services sales orders.
In December 2015, we started getting ready for the audit of our commercial services contracts by the Information Fair Trader Scheme (IFTS) which is part of The National Archives. This is an organisation that sets and verifies standards for the public sector. It encourages the reuse of information and requires a high standard of fairness and transparency.
Full IFTS accreditation was what we were aiming for. This means that users of public sector information can be confident that they will be treated reasonably and fairly by public sector information providers, like us!
Before the audit, I contacted John Williams, the Standards Manager from IFTS to find out which customer contracts they were going to audit. I then started collating the audit trail from when the initial contract was issued, any queries relating to the clauses of the contract, until receipt of the signed contract. Our colleague, Louise Booth from Corporate Legal Services helped us prepare for the visit.
The audit was in January, a while ago but still fresh in my memory. It involved interviewing myself and Eileen, Catherine Vaughan (Finance Director), Mike Westcott Rudd (Board Legal Adviser) and Katie Gordon-Smith (Head of Marketing & Sales) to name a few.
IFTS then presented their findings to our Chief Executive, Graham Farrant. He’s made a personal commitment to make sure we trade fairly in information and that all our dealings with customers are open and transparent.
So what were the results?
IFTS verified us against their Key Areas of Performance. On Innovation, we moved up from Satisfactory to be awarded the highest performance marking of Best Practise. On all the other performance markings we maintained our Good marking.
As a result, we’ve been re-accredited to IFTS and should be re-verified within the next 2-3- years.
Why is this good?
Reaccreditation shows Land Registry continually demonstrates fairness, openness and transparency in all its dealings with customers and that we have a suitable way of handling any complaints.
The renewal means that we’re able to continue licensing the re-use of our commercial data and other services until 2018-19 when we will begin the process of re-accreditation again.