The Citizens Information Board supports the delivery of information through three channels: online, telephone and face-to-face. CIB is also responsible for the provision of the Money Advice and Budgeting Service.
The public can access integrated information directly through the Citizens Information website. The Citizens Information Phone Service (CIPS) provides a telephone service and the nationwide network of Citizens Information Services (CISs) provides the face-to-face service through Citizens Information Centres. In this section CIPS, the CISs and MABS are referred to as 'delivery services'.
The Citizens Information Board (CIB) organises its work under four pillars and 13 service teams:
Citizens Information, Advocacy and Social Policy
Citizens Information Service Delivery
The Citizens Information Service Delivery team promotes and supports continuous improvement in the quality and reach of frontline Citizens Information services. It provides a range of critical supports to the nationwide network of Citizens Information services and the national Citizens Information Phone Service. These include management, quality, training, organisational and development supports, as well as substantial policy and procedural advice. The team also monitors and reports on service development and delivery, and allocates and monitors funding (operational grants) to the frontline services.
The Advocacy team leads the development of advocacy strategies and supports in the Citizens Information Services in order to support the public, in particular those with a disability, to access their rights and entitlements. The team is also responsible for supporting the National Advocacy Service for People with Disabilities (NAS) and the Sign Language Interpreting Service (SLIS).
Social Policy and Research
The Social Policy and Research team is responsible for developing CIB’s social policy feedback role and undertaking related research on information, advice and advocacy provision. The team collects and analyses information and data on social policy matters from delivery services, develops information on the effectiveness of current social policy and services, highlights issues that are of concern to users of those services to policy makers, develops social policy feedback and prepares evidence-based reports and submissions in this area.
MABS, Information Resources and e-Learning
MABS Service Delivery
The MABS Service Delivery team is responsible for funding and supporting the national network of Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS). The team resource and support MABS so they can provide high-quality services to the public and can improve and respond to public need. They work with services to develop and support new initiatives and projects such as the Dedicated Mortgage Arrears service, Approved Intermediary service and the Chartered Accountant Voluntary Advice clinics (CAVA). The members of the MABS Service Delivery team are the point of contact for MABS companies at CIB. They address obstacles to service delivery including issues relating to ICT, staffing, finance and premises in co-operation with Operations and ICT teams.
The Information Resources team is responsible for the Citizens Information websites – citizensinformation.ie and keepingyourhome.ie along with CIB’s information publications and library. It is also responsible for CIB’s corporate website – citizensinformationboard.ie and the assistireland.ie website.
The CIB e-Learning team is responsible for the design and delivery of online learning and development resources for staff and volunteers across all service areas, but with a particular emphasis on Citizen Information Services. This involves developing a learning management system and populating it with digital courses and resources that provide quality-assured and consistent training, that is more flexible and cost-effective than traditional classroom-based training.
HR and Governance
The HR and Governance team supports the staff of CIB and is responsible for recruitment and staff training. The team is also responsible for governance in CIB. This includes providing support to the CIB Board, and responsibility for Freedom of Information, data protection and customer complaints. The HR and Governance team works closely with the Operations team, which is now responsible for supporting the delivery services on HR and governance matters.
Finance and Administration
The Finance and Administration team is responsible for finance matters and procedures for the delivery services. CIB ensures that proper financial controls and reporting procedures are followed by delivery services – which ensures that value for money is delivered to the taxpayer.
The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) team manages and supports the day-to-day operational needs of CIB and the network of CIB’s delivery services. The ICT team manages the complete ICT infrastructure on behalf of CIB and the delivery services. This is a large enterprise of over 200 locations, 1,800 staff, and 1,300 workstations with a computer network spanning the country. The team is also responsible for hardware procurement, software development, data centre server resources and applications, disaster recovery, backups and a dedicated helpdesk.
PR and Promotions
A PR and Promotions Executive promotes awareness of the Citizens Information Board and its main service brands of Citizens Information and MABS.
The Abhaile team is responsible for delivering sustained communications and information campaigns aimed at long-term mortgage arrears borrowers. The goal is to encourage engagement with the State’s mortgage arrears supports and ultimately contribute to positive solutions for those homeowners in the longest mortgage arrears. Abhaile is jointly coordinated and funded by the Department of Justice and Equality and the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection. MABS, the Insolvency Service of Ireland, the Legal Aid Board and the Citizens Information Board work together to provide the Abhaile services.
The Operations team is responsible for supporting delivery services to develop, establish and maintain best practice and legislative compliance in areas such as HR, governance, financial and property management. The team ensures that the delivery services are supported with relevant guidelines, procedures and resources to achieve this. The team monitors delivery services’ compliance in HR, governance, financial and property development and management.
The Restructuring team is responsible for restructuring the CIS and MABS services from 93 companies to 16 regional companies in 2018 and will be wound down during 2019.
Note: When restructuring is complete, the restructuring pillar will be replaced by an Information, Research and Policy pillar. Currently these functions are split across the two Service Development and Support areas. The new structure should be operational in 2019.