StaffMail LA address book

The StaffMail offline address book that is visible to a member of staff in a London school contains every StaffMail user in that person’s school.
A version this address book which lists every StaffMail user across all schools in an LA has until now been available only to users who have either USO “LA Power User” or “LA Super User” status, but StaffMail has now been modified so that it is visible to all staff associated with USO’s “LA or Council” establishment.

StaffMail display name

A new enhancement to the LGfL StaffMail system makes it possible to control the format of the display name presented in outbound emails and address books.  The current options are:

<Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>  (this is the default setting)
<Title> <Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Title> <Initial of Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Title> <Legal Last Name>
<Initial of Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Legal Last Name>
<Legal Last Name>, <Legal First Name>
<Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Initial of Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Preferred Last Name>
<Initial of Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Preferred Last Name>
<Preferred Last Name>, <Preferred First Name>

Each LA can choose its own preferred format, and by default this option will apply to users in all schools within that LA.  Additionally, though, each school can pick its own preferred format (and this will override the LA setting, if in place).

Once a change is made to the school or LA policy, the revised display name will take effect for a StaffMail user whenever a modification is made to the person’s USO account.  This modification might be a password change (via the ‘key’ icon at or an update to the user’s preferred names (through the My Account… Account details page within the secure area of the support site).

SIMS to USO automation

As an authority making use of the ability to automate the USO account management through nightly SIMS exports we have come across a side affect of this system that we did not totally foresee:

A few of our secondary schools have already given their year 13’s leaving dates in SIMS, meaning that the next nightly export removed these peoples USO accounts and the associated email account. Right in the middle of UCAS applications, the same problem may occur to a lesser extent with Year 11 leavers and college applications.

On one hand I am not convinced this is a technical issue, as from a data security point of view if someone has left they are no longer under the control of the school and should no longer be entitled to use the schools or LA’s ICT facilities. However from a customer service point of view if these accounts have been used on UCAS or college application forms then it unreasonable to just dismiss them.

For the school involved we have disabled their nightly exports until late August/September to give the pupils a grace period.

Has anyone else come across this problem and does anyone have any ideas about what could be done to alleviate the problem in future years?

Darren King : LB Sutton


The USO-AutoText service is presently available for trialing within a USO environment on a school by school basis.

Once integrated with USO-AutoUpdate it’s possible via the Support Site interface for schools to distribute text messages to staff and parent contacts either as bulk messages or as single destination texts.

For more information on the service try clicking on the ‘SMS’ tab on the Atomwide or LGfL support sites, where you can also register your mobile phone by visiting the ‘My Accout’ tab and then following the ‘Account Details’ link.


USO-AutoUpdate is a new service from Atomwide, approved by Capita, which automates the exporting of data from SIMS (other MIS support is planned for the future) into the Atomwide/LGfL USO service.

A highly granular level of control and visibility is offered on the details that are exported into USO, which can include staff, pupils, and parents, including parent or guardian contact details.

The product is available on a per school basis, or as a bulk purchase at LA level, for new and existing USO users. The latter is the recommended process of procurement, especially if part of a new USO rollout across an LA.

As part of the process, the USO support site provides an interface to allow the management of user details as they are imported and to allow for the cleansing of any erroneous data whether in the MIS system or in USO.

Wauton Samuel <> USO integration

Wauton Samuel have just completed work that allows School MIS system to automatically update the USO database in a similar way to that of the GroupCall exporter product. This package completely automates to process of creation of USO users.

Wauton Samuel’s main customer base is the Primary sector in London and if you are using this product and wish to enable the Automatic USO update feature please contact them …

By loggin on at WSWebServices


By email


By phone on 020 8691 6622

User Administration Tools migration

The final stages in the migration of user administration tools from the “old” user management site (operating at to the support site are now complete.  Nominated Contacts will find that they are now able to modify the settings of individual staff and pupil accounts by logging in to the support site and clicking the Details link alongside the records returned by the page at User Accounts -> User list/search.

The “old” user management site will be shut down on 31st July 2009.  From today until the end of the month, users accessing will be presented with a notice during login which informs them about the impending change.

User Listing

Couple more additions to the user provisioning that should be of interest to Itcontacts.

If your using an automated method of creation of USOaccounts like GroupCall or USO-AutoUpdate then you will now receive, as Itcontacts, an email when new users are created in your school.

In addition in the

Home : User Accounts : User list/search

View on the support site there is a new indicator option (bottom left side) that lets you sort users by creation date.

Interested Parties….


Up until now, when a case is raised in the Call Logging system the person raising the case receives e-mails whenever an update to the case takes place. That is fine for most situations but there are circumstances where more than one person needs to receive these e-mail alerts. An example would be in a school with several Nominated Contacts where all might wish to be appraised of case updates rather than each having to log in regularly to the support site just in case a change has been made.


From today, if you are interested in the progress of a case which you are permitted to view but which you did not raise then you can click on a new button in the case marked “Register Interest”. This will add you to the list of case update e-mail recipients and ensure that any subsequent additions to the case are e-mailed to you as well as the person who raised the case in the first place.

File Upload For Support Cases

As part of the continuing work on enhancing the support site, we are pleased to announce a significant new feature to the call logging system. Files may now be attached to cases that are raised on the system, both at the point of opening the case and as a case proceeds. If you wish to attach a file to a case that is in the process of being raised then it can be done using the browse facility on the page where the user is required to enter textual details of the case.
Once a case has been raised, a file may be uploaded using a similar feature within the case itself. Simply browse to the file that is required to be uploaded and elect to open the appropriate file. A list of supported filetypes is displayed on the page in question. 

Modification to support reporting

Information for Atomwide USO School Nominated Contact (NC), Power Users and Super Users.

As you may already be aware, during 2008 and 2009 there has been an increased focus, supported by government guidance, relating to information handling and information security, especially with regard to staff and pupil details in the context of schools.

In response to this guidance, Atomwide has been reviewing its own data security methodologies and practices, and discussing their implications with its contracting customer authorities.

With the increased amount of data now being transferred in support of USO-integrated services, and with an ever increasing range of services relying on that data for access and authentication purposes, those discussions resulted in Atomwide changing the process by which personal user data could be sent into the Atomwide Service Desk at the end of 2008.

Following that change, all personal user data was required to be submitted via automated secure upload, or via manual upload using the secure utility within the Support Site.

A similar change will take affect from 1st August 2009, that will result in authorised contacts needing to post support enquires via the ‘Raise an Issue’ option under the Service Desk tab in the Support Site.

In this way, we can ensure that all sensitive data, whether intentionally submitted to us, or unintentionally included in a support request, is sent to us in an encrypted and hence secure fashion, rather than via an email system that cannot be verified as secure in the same way.

As a consequence, any emailed enquiries posted after 31st July 2009 will receive an automated reply with details of how to log a case via the Support Site.

OpenCheck accepts free form text messages

OpenCheck will now allow for free text messages to be configured by each school in your LA.

The system still allows for the selection for a standard set of messages which now include a number that cover holidays and weekends.

In addition Head Teachers, Deputy Heads, Bursars and IT contacts can now set the status of schools.

Configure your schools settings in the support site at

Home : Resources : School OpenCheck

Yet another tweak to OpenCheck

We have added another slight tweak to the way OpenCheck works as a response to end user requests.

If you select a school from the pull down list in the map report page you will see that the selected school is highlighted by a flashing icon rather than a solid one.

Here is an example page for a London LA

Select a school from the drop down menu on the left to see the effect.