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Step 1 - Get inspired

This is the sixth year that we've celebrated [email protected] and year-on-year more councils have got involved.

In 2018, 123 councils and emergency services marked the day with a wide range of activities.

Getting involved does make a difference. Your day doesn't need to be all singing and all dancing, even having a little display by your desk helps.  Colleagues from councils across the country have come up with a wide range of activities, from having displays in the council reception to giving chocolates out to colleagues.

Get some ideas from how councils have marked the day over the past couple of years:

Articles and reports from councils:

Some tips from Custodians on running a good event:

  • I'd book a room earlier to ensure I got a better room. Forward planning is key. Maybe send quizzes and facts out ahead of the day to raise interest rather than just on the day

  • Plenty of planning helps. We had a couple of meetings in advance of GIS Day, did plenty of research and promoted the event on our internal weekly news item, as well as having an A-frame advert in reception on the morning of the event. Next year there will be cakes involved as that always attracts more people!!

  • Try and tie in with an existing event if possible to target more people

  • It was our first one and it was the perfect way to showcase what we do.  Certainly preparation and lots of visuals and maps helped.  The freebies were very good too.  We used online quiz posted via our intranet to engage users and bring them down for a reward

  • I would prepare more information as to how we use the gazetteer internally as that was of most interest

  • This years was improved a lot by having other departments with a stake in GIS systems be involved as part of a bigger event

  • More on background display to catch the eye

  • More pens and more sweets! They were very popular!

  • Begin planning well ahead and be proud of what you do!

  •  We posted stuff out in the internal mail to those we know wouldn't or couldn't attend. 

  • Cake and pens - two incredibly powerful tools for harnessing public attention. Also, do a joint display with your GIS Team (assuming these are separate), as this widens the scope to include more interesting themes and displays, and there's a lot of crossover

  • You need to make it interactive...have a quiz which involves people having to use the system to find UPRNs or give them UPRNs and ask them to find out where these are? We have joined with our maps to create an editable layer where colleagues can enter 'points of interest' in the local area - we will then review these and attach a UPRN to the record if appropriate, etc

  • I'd suggest more cakes, games and free goodies (everybody loves free goodies!) as well as lots of colourful maps & screens to demonstrate what your systems can do

  • I would bake more cakes!!! there was not enough 

  • We are considering holding the event in a different part of our offices next year to reach a different audience. The advice I would give to others is to share your event by word of mouth as much as possible and use your contacts to your advantage - we did lots of internal comms marketing by email and intranet but talking to people in person got the best result

  • Make whatever you are doing fun as more people will want to take part and have plenty of cake available for visitors!

And some suggestions from us

  • Make use of the resources in the toolkit and ask GeoPlace for extra  items from the toolkit 

  • Have a quiz, use the template we provide in the toolkit to tailor the quiz to your council

  • Send an all staff or departmental email using the day as a springboard to tell people about the gazetteers (pro forma included in the toolkit)

  • Have a stand in the building foyer where you can give out goodies. Publicise your stand with the poster and handout included in the toolkit

  • Hold an event – invite people to come at lunchtime to hear more about the gazetteers

  • Write an article in the staff magazine and/or include it on your intranet

  • Bake a gazetteers inspired cake - use the rice paper cup-cake toppers we can provide

  • Put up a photo of you/your team up on the Khub

  • Tweet about it using #GazDay

  • Don't forget to give yourself a pat on the back – this wouldn't be possible without your hard work