Digital Energy Advice in Argyll and Bute
Scotland’s Digital Participation Charter
In June 2018 we signed up to Scotland's Digital Participation Charter. By signing the charter we have committed to the following five key pledges - allowing Scotland to work together and skill up our digital nation.
- Skill Up: We ensure that our staff & volunteers have the opportunity to develop essential digital skills.
- Support Staff: We support our staff & volunteers to help others learn essential digital skills and embrace digital tools.
- Support Scotland: We support our nation by contributing resources and practical support for Scotland in whatever ways we can.
- The Essentials: We support a common language based on digital participation and essential digital skills to make our thinking and actions as clear as possible.
- Come Together: We channel our efforts through the Digital Participation programme so that our activities are coordinated and build on each other.
Below you will find what we pledged to do when we signed up to the Charter and what we’ve done so far.
1. Skill Up: ALIenergy will allow staff to identify areas where they require help and support to improve their digital skills.
Our staff are working together to implement efficient processes across the organisation and helping each other identify areas that require support for digital skills.
2. Support Staff: ALIenergy will encourage and support staff to help colleagues, partners and clients learn essential digital skills and embrace digital tools. We will encourage staff to undertake a variety of learning opportunities such as peer to peer learning, online courses and workshops.
Our staff attended Digital Boost workshops facilitated by Business Gateway and some are progressing with an online Diploma in Digital Marketing. Knowledge gained at these opportunities is shared across the team with peer to peer learning. ALIenergy has launched an Instagram account showcasing the sights we see travelling across Argyll and Bute and on Twitter we launched #argyllenergyhour while continuing to encourage colleagues, partners and clients to join us on Social Media.
3. Support Scotland: ALIenergy will produce digital material to raise awareness of energy efficiency, fuel poverty and affordable warmth.
We have highlighted digital tools that can help householders to understand their energy demand, support them to reduce that demand and how to sustain a comfortable and affordable home. We have introduced this to our general energy advice work with staff and clients benefiting from the use of tablets funded by this project.
4. The Essentials: ALIenergy supports a common digital language and will endeavour to introduce clients to a digital world that they can benefit from.
We have introduced tablets for our Affordable Warmth Team which allow them to carry out tasks with a householder in their home during their visit. Applications such as the Warm Home Discount are online and this will allow our advisors to be sure their clients are accessing every support that is available to them online. We have tested this over the last few years and the team are delighted to roll this out to everyone.
5. Come Together: ALIenergy will promote the Charter with partners and colleagues in our area and sector. We will learn from others and share good practice.
We have attended SCVO events and met with organisations signed up to the Charter; shared details with partner organisations working in Argyll and Bute; and continue to promote the Charter through our work.
Digital Energy Advice in Argyll and Bute
We were grateful to receive funding from the Digital Participation Charter Fund supported by the Scottish Government and BT. The funding allows us to:
- meet the 5 pledges outlined in the Charter;
- improve our digital skills across our organisation;
- give staff the opportunity to improve their individual skills;
- purchase tablets for advisors to use during house visits;
- produce material to help people improve their energy literacy and access help to understand and reduce their energy demand; and
- improve our digital platforms.
This project will introduce digital skills to people at home to help address their energy issues and alleviate fuel poverty. We think by introducing the benefits of digital skills through our energy advice to those with limited digital knowledge or experience will help drive uptake to learn futher. We know our clients are more engaged with referrals made to third parties if the referral is made through trusted intermediaries, like ourselves. By demonstrating how the use of digital skills can help lower energy costs and save money we hope that our clients are more inclined to further develop their digital skills. We recognise fuel poverty isn’t a stand alone issue and many people facing fuel poverty may have other issues that require help and assistance. We regularly make referrals to Home Energy Scotland for energy efficiency funding measures, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service for fire safety checks, foodbanks and other support organisations. We believe a holistic approach is vital to ensure we help people improve their lives and leave a legacy. Digital skills fit perfectly with this ethos and we recognise there are many people, especially the elderly and vulnerable living in Argyll and Bute, who are behind with the evolving world of technology. We believe introducing digital skills to energy advice will not only help improve their energy behaviours but also open a door to take their digital skills learning further.
Join the energy conversation across Argyll and Bute every Friday 10am-11am over on Twitter or search #argyllenergyhour to join at a time that suits you.
On Wednesday evening 22nd August 2018 we were taking part in the regular #argyllhour on Twitter. During a conversation about energy and rural areas we realised there was a space for people to discuss energy across Argyll and Bute on Twitter. So, on Friday 24th August 2018 we launched #argyllenergyhour and it's grown every week since. Every Friday morning individuals and organisations log on to Twitter and discuss their aims, struggles and experiences. Everyone is welcome.
Energy is a huge topic from heating and transport to generation and careers so #argyllenergyhour allows for people to share news, discuss issues, develop ideas and report success in 280 characters. Yes, we can do all that in 280 characters, join us and we'll show you how.
So, if you want to connect and talk with like-minded people join the #argyllenergyhour conversation on Twitter, find opportunities at your fingertips.
Follow us on Twitter @ALIenergy13 and use #argyllenergyhour so we can retweet your post.
We’ve been working on building our online presence as we believe using digital platforms is an excellent way to use our resources efficiently. However, we do realise not everyone is on social media or inclined to join so we won’t leave anyone out. You will still find us at local events, community groups and remember we can visit you at home or at a local meeting space.
Twitter - Follow us on Twitter to keep up to date on our daily activities, events, projects and news. Use the #argyllenergyhour to join us in our dedicated hour of discussion every Friday morning, 10-11am.
Facebook - Like our page on Facebook to keep up to date on our daily activities, events, projects and news. If you have a question please comment on our posts or send us a private message. We rely heavily on word of mouth in Argyll and Bute, so we ask you to like, comment and share our posts to help us spread the word digitally.
Instagram - Our team are lucky to have one of the most scenic commutes in the world. While on our journeys across Argyll and Bute we've started to take five minutes out to appreciate our beautiful scenery and we'd like to share the views with you. Follow us on Instagram to see the hills, lochs, beaches, wildlife, buildings and people of Argyll and Bute.
LinkedIn - We're always keen to hear what others are doing and where we can help promote, support or compliment. Connect with us and our staff on LinkedIn.