Updated: May 2013 (PICT links corrected)
Added: 24 February 2009
We really don’t need to tell you this but here goes anyway: getting your IT support right will make your life VERY MUCH EASIER. First step is to know what is available.
Of course, this changes regularly so what you will read below is correct at the time of writing but it’s in your interests to check PICT’s pages on the intranet for the latest information and advice. First stop is the Quick Guide to Members Services which gives all the info we set out below but is updated whenever PICT makes changes or adds services. You can access it here: http://intranet.parliament.uk/intranet/pict/assets/pict-services-hocmembers-quickguide.pdf
This link – and others mentioned below – will only connect if you are currently working within the intranet.
NB: PICT links tend to change pretty regularly so we can’t guarantee those mentioned below.
2. The service desk
3. Setting up a new account
4. Logging in
5. The equipment allowance
6. Working away from the Estate
Formerly the Parliamentary Communications Directorate (PCD), PICT serves both Houses’ IT requirements. In fact, it’s the only Department to be owned by both Houses and equally responsible to both.
According to PICT, their aim is ‘to be a world leader in the provision, support and exploitation of ICT within Parliaments’. PICT provides expertise on business process change and greater training opportunities to Members of the House of Commons, as well as IT support to Members and staff.
PICT’s intranet index page is here:
2. The Service Desk
The Service Desk is committed to providing high quality customer service and technical support, whilst acting as a single point of contact for all Parliamentary Users. The main aim of the Desk is to provide rapid, effective resolutions, or escalation, for a wide variety of computer, network and telephone related problems and queries.
PICT’s Service Desk values are:
- To ensure users are making the best use of the technology available to support their constituents or business function
- To treat users with courtesy and deal with enquiries in a professional and efficient manner
- To resolve problems as quickly as possible to ensure minimal disruption to the day to day work of users
You can contact the Service Desk by email: PICTservicedesk@parliament.uk or by telephone on extension 2001. During peak times and outside of opening hours, a Voicemail option is available to record your requests. They endeavour to respond to all emails and voicemails within an hour during operating hours. When you call the Service Desk, your call is logged with an individual reference number (which you should write down) and its progress is recorded on the Service Desk system. You’ll need to have the following details to hand:
- Full Name / User name
- Office/Department/Member’s name
- Where you are located
- Contact details
- Exact nature of problem (it is helpful to have the equipment in front of you so that you are able to give a clear explanation of the problem)
There are various techniques used by the analysts to try to resolve your problem. This may include shadowing your computer, in other words remotely taking control of your computer (slightly spooky at first!).
In the event that your problem is not resolved by the analyst, it will be handed to one of the other specialist teams, who will either offer further technical advice over the telephone or visit your office if it is located on the Parliamentary Estate.
3. Setting up a new account
New user accounts can be requested by the Members of both Houses or, in the case of House Staff, Line Managers (for example, when you’re setting up an account for an intern). This can be done by contacting the PICT Service Desk either by telephone on extension 2001 or email PICTServiceDesk@parliament.uk.
The Service Desk will reply to the request by email, giving instructions how to access an Induction Presentation for new users to the Parliamentary Network and attaching a New User Request Form.
The new user must view the Induction Presentation and use the link at the end to send an e-mail to the PICT Training team. They will record the fact that the new user has completed the induction process.
The Member or Line Manager should complete the New User Request Form and return it to the PICT Service Desk by email (PICTServiceDesk@parliament.uk) or fax (020 7219 2288). Once this is done, the new account will be set up.
4. Logging in
Once your new account is set up, a Service Desk analyst will contact you by telephone and talk you through the process of activating it or logging in for the first time. Once your new account is up and running, you will receive an email from the PICT Service Desk welcoming you to the Parliamentary Network. This will contain more information on your account and how to use it.
5. The Equipment Allowance from PICT
Members of the House of Commons are entitled to:
- Up to four Desktop Computers and 17″ flat screen monitors
- Up to three Laptops, from a choice of two, including carry case (A maximum of five machines per Member, e.g. three desktops and two laptops).
- Two printers from a choice of 4 including colour laser and multifunction laser
- Broadband/ ADSL for remote offices.
Your MP can purchase additional Parliamentary supplied IT equipment if required.
All of the available devices can be viewed at the Members Centre in Portcullis House Atrium, PICT local office at Room 335, 2 Millbank or email the PICT Service Desk at: PICTServicedesk@parliament.uk for more information
6. Working away from the Estate – Services to Members of the House of Commons
There are methods for Members and their staff to access the Parliamentary Network when they are not on the Estate. If you really want to be able to work at home, you will need to contact PICT to arrange one of these options. While it might be useful to access your work emails and calendar from home, consider whether your MP is likely to send you ‘a little something to look into’ on a Saturday afternoon.
Up-to-date information can be seen here:
There’s a useful list of current (May 2013) contacts here: