Councils shine in online parking fine test

More than two thirds of London boroughs and metropolitan districts provide a good or very good online parking service, according to a new study.

The report, which investigated how easy it is to pay parking fines on council websites, is the first of Socitm’s new Better Connected surveys to be published following its decision to stagger them throughout the year.

The representative body for ICT professionals in local government said 70% of councils surveyed scored three or four stars on a scale of one to four.

Martin Ferguson, Socitm’s director of policy and research, said: ”The service provided by the best performers is really excellent.

“By making Better Connected results and commentary more accessible through our new publishing platform we are enabling the sharing of digital expertise that is so vital for the sector.”

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Socitm said that getting three or four stars is now more difficult due to the addition of an “essential question” that councils must pass. Examiners also mark down services that offer out-of-date information.

Councils which performed less well failed in areas like “failing to match terminology on the physical parking ticket with that on the payment form”, and “making it difficult to navigate to information about discounts and appeals”.

Following the task-based surveys, Better Connected will test performance from mobiles, usability and accessibility before combining all elements into an overall star ranking to be announced in Spring 2016.

Colin Marrs

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