Information

Collaborative messaging apps and non-work / social spaces: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.


Information requested

Please see the notes at the bottom for clarification on these requests.

1. Do you use one or more collaborative messaging apps?
** If no to Q1, Q2-4 do not apply to you and I do not need a response to them. **

2. Please supply:
2.1. a list of names of those apps, and
2.2. the total number of your employees and workers who are registered for each app.

3. Please provide a list names of public channels in those apps which are used primarily for non-work purposes / socialising among employees.

4. To the extent that these are set in the apps, please also provide the following for each channel in Q3:
4.1. Channel topic
4.2. Channel description
4.3. The number of members in that channel.

** Notes for Q1-4. **
Q1-4: Examples of collaborative messaging apps include Slack, Microsoft Teams, Google Chat, Matrix and Workplace. There are other apps too, and you may be using an app that you've built internally. For the avoidance of doubt, I am including services provided solely via a website within the meaning of "app" here.

Q3-4: Examples of channels include a general non-work channel and channels for specific interests and hobbies, such as pets, cooking, sports, and so on. Public channel means that any employee may freely join and post in the channel if they are registered for the app, without having to request access. Your messaging app may use a different term for channels, such as (but not limited to) "groups", "categories", and "streams".

Q4: For the avoidance of doubt, I am not looking for a channel topic or description to be written solely for this FOI request if one doesn't already exist. Some apps provide these as built-in fields that employees can set. It is these fields I am looking for.

Response

This FOI response is incorporating other duplicate requests received, which are:

202200328528 (Chief Dental Officer)
202200329634 (Marine Scotland)
202200329208 (Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning (Scotland))
202200328535 (Rent Service Scotland)
202200328529 (Housing and Regeneration Directorate)
202200329662 (SASA)

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested.

We do not hold a record of any collaborative messaging apps specific to the departments or teams cited in your requests. Therefore I have opted to provide a central response on behalf of the Scottish Government covering all relevant corporate tools supplied to all staff.

1. Do you use one or more collaborative messaging apps?

1. The Scottish Government provides two collaborative messaging apps for colleagues across the SCOTS network: Microsoft Teams and Yammer. These corporate tools are provided centrally. We do not hold a central record of other collaborative messaging apps in use across business areas. The SCOTS network is a shared service IT network known as SCOTS Connect. It is supplied by iTECs, the Scottish Government’s IT Department, to more than 40 public bodies including the Scottish Government.

2. Please supply:
2.1. a list of names of those apps, and
2.2. the total number of your employees and workers who are registered for each app.


2. The total number of users on SCOTS, who can access these apps, is currently 21,320. This is broken down as 10,890 users from the Scottish Government and 10,420 from other public sector organisations, who access SCOTS as part of our shared service.

3. Please provide a list names of public channels in those apps which are used primarily for non-work purposes / socialising among employees.

4. To the extent that these are set in the apps, please also provide the following for each channel in Q3:
4.1. Channel topic
4.2. Channel description
4.3. The number of members in that channel.


3&4. Microsoft Teams is primarily used for hybrid meetings and communication supporting colleague engagement and collaboration. There are no public channels on Microsoft Teams. The SCOTS Connect Yammer Network is administered by the Scottish Government and can be shared by all SCOTS users. However, we don’t hold a breakdown of membership of Yammer communities specific to the departments or teams cited in your requests. Therefore, this is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

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