For the Mayor of London and London Assembly elections on 6 May 2021, the Greater London Authority (GLA) successfully deployed an electronic vote-counting solution to process approximately 7.9 million hand-marked paper ballots.
Global IT and business consulting services firm CGI and election and voting technology specialist Smartmatic, together with other partners including Hamilton Rentals, provided end-to-end services, software and technical infrastructure for the election. In the elections, which were delayed from May 2020 due to the pandemic, voters elected the Mayor of London, 14 Constituency Assembly Members and 11 London-wide Assembly Members.
The centralised processing of the voter-marked ballots began on 7 May and was split over two days to ensure a COVID-19 safe environment. Using high-speed scanners in three count centres, with stringent cyber security measures in place, the count was delivered with streamlined ballot processing, enhanced auditing and reduced staffing requirements.
With a voting population of nearly 6.2 million scattered across 32 boroughs, London has one of the most complex local election landscapes in the United Kingdom. Approximately 10.6 million votes were counted as the Mayoral election used preferential voting and each voter selected two options. The GLA had to employ three different counting systems: first-past-the-post, a supplementary vote system, and a form of proportional representation. The electronic count was validated by the Constituency Returning Officer and the Greater London Returning Officer.
Deputy Greater London Returning Officer, Alex Conway said, “With CGI, Smartmatic and partners, we knew the count was in safe hands. The commitment of their teams meant the rapid shift to delivering a COVID-safe election was a real success.”
Donna Kelly, Senior Vice President, South and Midlands Business Unit at CGI in the UK said, “We are delighted to have worked with the GLA and London Boroughs to plan, test, train and successfully deliver the e-counting solution for the recent London elections. Our focus was on helping to deliver a transparent, secure and accurate election in a safe environment.”
Commenting on the e-counting process, Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica stated, “The technology was key to simplify and speed up the counting process while making it more auditable. Counting for all elections was performed simultaneously thanks to the electronic counting platform.”
Founded in 1976, CGI is among the largest independent IT and business consulting services firms in the world. With 77,000 consultants and other professionals across the globe, CGI delivers an end-to-end portfolio of capabilities, from strategic IT and business consulting to systems integration, managed IT and business process services and intellectual property solutions. CGI works with clients through a local relationship model complemented by a global delivery network that helps clients digitally transform their organizations and accelerate results. CGI Fiscal 2020 reported revenue is C$12.16 billion and CGI shares are listed on the TSX (GIB.A) and the NYSE (GIB). Learn more at cgi.com.
Smartmatic specializes in the design and deployment of election system technologies. As the global leader in providing secure, transparent, accessible, verifiable voting systems, Smartmatic is setting the standard for election integrity and inclusivity worldwide, including encrypted results transmission, paper ballot back-up, extensive auditing and Internet voting.
Incorporated in 1972 Hamilton Rentals is the UK’s largest and longest established technology rental company, which specialises in the build, delivery, deployment and support of temporary hardware solutions.
Hamilton’s heritage is in helping businesses manage their IT assets and meet their temporary technology demands, providing the latest hardware on flexible rental contracts coupled with unsurpassed installation and engineering support. Our expertise allows us to work as an extension to customer focussed solution teams to provision relatively “simple” IT such as PCs or AV, as well as, complex infrastructure and networked solutions. www.hamilton.co.uk