Socitm survey shows majority of urban boroughs and districts obtain three or four star rankings
Nearly 70% of urban local authorities are providing a good online service for car parking payments, according to a new Better Connected survey by public sector IT association Socitm.
The tests, which focused on London boroughs and metropolitan districts, found that almost 70% of council websites achieved a three or four star ranking on a scale of one to four. It compares with 72% when the task was last tested in 2013.
The higher rankings have been made more difficult to achieve as there is a now an ‘essential question’ that has to be answered correctly. Also, the Better connected tests mark down any services that offer information that is clearly not up to date.
Councils that do less well on this task tend to fail in just one or two key areas, like failing to match terminology on the physical parking ticket with that on the payment form, or making it difficult to navigate to information about discounts and appeals.
The results of the test are the first to be published since Socitm relaunched its Better Connected programme. It is planning to publish the results of tests of other online services, including rubbish and recycling, planning and leisure facilities, over the coming months.
Vicky Sargent, director of Boilerhouse Media, which is working with Socitm on the programme, said: “Every council has its own page on the site, and can comment publicly on its results. We aim to publish open data as well as subscriber-only data on this site, as visitors will see.”
Image: Aaron Thomas, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons