UK’s joint venture IntElect provides e-counting election solution to elect London Mayor
UK’s IntElect, a joint venture set up by DRS and ERS, has been highly praised for successfully providing their specialist electronic e-Counting solution to the Greater London Authority (GLA) for the Mayor of London and the London Assembly members elections.
Taking place every four years this is one of the largest and most complex elections in the UK.London has approximately 5.8 million voters and each voter is given three ballot papers.The GLA undertook a public procurement process in 2010, inviting vendors from around the world to bid for the project.IntElect, a joint venture between DRS Data Services Ltd and ERS (Electoral Reform Services)was delighted to be awarded the contract.As two of the world’s leading election specialists, IntElect provides a totally unique integrated election service for large electronically counted elections in the public sector.
e-Counting technology allowed the Greater London Returning Officer and the 14 Constituency Returning Officers to register, scan, verify and adjudicate over 6.5 million ballot papers using 3 different voting systems, culminating in the declaration of the largest and most complex regional election in the UK.
Careful planning and attention to business continuity meant that the systems were able to deal with a complete power outage at the start of the count at one of the 3 super counting sites located in London.Even with this delay there was no compromise on quality or accuracy.
John Bennett, Greater London Returning Officer, said: ”We are very pleased to have worked with IntElect on the 2012 election. They have a professional and highly skilled team who were very responsive in adapting their standard solution to our specific requirements during the development of our e-counting system.”
Constituency Returning Officer for Bexley and Bromley, Doug Patterson, was based at the London’s Excel Centre in Docklands, one of the three super count centres.He was full of enthusiasm and praise for the efficiency of the IntElect operation, saying; ”IntElect gave us an incredible team and fantastic equipment that kept ahead of us throughout the count process. The efficiency and transparency of the whole operation ensured a completely smooth and stunning performance.”
Head of election services at DRS, Sonya Anderson, was delighted with the successful role that IntElect played in the 2012 GLA elections, commenting; “IntElect provided full e-Counting products and service delivery to the GLA, including software designed to map the workflow of the elections, ensuring clarity and visibility. The efficiency of e-Counting was evident in facilitating the detection of errors and the accurate and secure recording of every ballot paper. This proved to be essential in what was a tightly run contest.”
The GLA had previously undertaken a cost benefit analysis and established that e-counting would not only be proportionate in cost when compared to a traditional count, but would allow London to deliver accurate results in just one day, compared to the 3 or 4 days estimated for a manual count. In addition to this, this election realised one of the Greater London Returning Officer’s key objectives of improving the transparency and accessibility of this ground breaking count.The e-Counting system was able to provide dynamic vote and count information in real time throughout the whole process. This valuable information was streamed live to all election stakeholders, including voters, agents, candidates and the media, being projected in each count centre, at the GLA City Hall and live on the London Elects web site.The e-Counting technology proved to stand up to the demands of a large scale and complex election - delivering trusted results run under transparent processes.
DRS has over 40 years experience in delivering data capture projects around the world, specialising in examination and assessment processing and election and census solutions. Systems are implemented using the Company’s extensive expertise in document design, printing, award winning scanning and image capture technologies, software, logistics, project management and consultancy.
Visit http://www.drs.co.uk/ for more details.
Electoral Reform Services has undertaken postal voting administration and electronic counting for a number of local authorities, having over 100 years experience in election solutions for a variety of organisations.