Local firm’s role in Scots poll

Ann-Marie Slavin.
Ann-Marie Slavin.

A Derry firm played a key role in the Scottish local government election earlier this month.

In a remarkable achievement for a local technology firm, election services provider OPT2VOTE, part of Idox group, provided the software for electronic vote-counting services for all 32 councils in the Scottish local government elections.

With an electorate of more than four million registered voters, the elections were for all councils across Scotland, selecting 1,223 councillors in 353 wards.

The Scottish Government chose the OPT2VOTE software to operate the election count for 2012 because of the company’s experience in delivering election services.

Headquartered in Derry and founded in 2002, OPT2VOTE’s local staff have developed huge expertise in electronic vote counting and election management.

Since May 2010, Opt2Vote staff have been working with the Electoral Commission and the Scottish local councils to ensure a secure, transparent and accurate election count for 2012. The collaboration and hard work paid off with the successful delivery of electronic vote counting for this month’s local government elections.

Scottish Local Government Minister Derek Mackay said: “I am pleased that this year’s voting process has been efficient and returned robust election results quickly and effectively. We must now turn our attention to renewing local democracy and encouraging higher turnout at future elections in Scotland.”

Ann-Marie Slavin, Managing Director and founder of Opt2Vote, added: “I am very proud of the team at Opt2Vote, here and in Edinburgh, who have worked incredibly hard to build the software and elections expertise that delivered the results in Scotland...

“Everyone in Northern Ireland should be proud that a dedicated team of talented people here in the North West can produce technically complex software solutions that compete at the highest level. Our eCount product has now been proven to rank with the very best systems internationally.”

Meanwhile, OPT2VOTE will be demonstrating how the eCount system works to local politicians and public sector staff during a two day exhibition at Belfast City Hall on May 30 and 31.