Today's digital era of internet and social media use has changed routes of communication. It has become essential for Local Authorities to use these channels to communicate with the public. Providing services digitally harnesses the power and convenience of the web, making the public's interactions with authorities quicker, simpler and more secure.
As the Government's Digital Strategy document highlighted, digitised services present an unmissable opportunity for Local Authorities. Evidence indicates that the online delivery of some public services can be as strong as that offered through other channels but at a lower unit cost. It is estimated that millions of pounds could be saved by bringing some public services online, and users receiving a better and more responsive experience.
Local Authorities cannot afford to ignore digital communication mediums used by the public or the cost savings that can be garnered from these new channels.
In a report produced by Socitm for the Government, 'Potential for Channel Shift in Local Government', it was estimated that the typical cost per channel interaction was face to face - £8.62; telephone - £2.83; web self-serve - £0.15 – a huge decrease in the cost to serve if achieved by self-service.
Hertfordshire County Council continues to pioneer the 'digital by default' revolution through its use of new and innovative technologies, harnessing the power and convenience of the web to make residents' interactions with roads and traffic information quicker, simpler and more secure.
"roadworks.org has transformed the way we work in network management. Gone are the days when we spent hours on data entry and manipulation to identify clashes and book road space. It is much easier making decisions and identifying opportunities for coordination with a visual tool like roadworks. org. The fact that works promoters, our customer service team and the public can all access the same information is a huge bonus.”
Hertfordshire County Council
As an innovative organisation, Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) is at the forefront of developments in digital communication and the public's need to access information quickly and conveniently. HCC was a pioneer of roadworks communication, as one of the first local highway authorities to join roadworks.org in 2006 and publish their street and roadworks on what was to become a national platform.
The roadworks.org platform supports the work of HCC by:
- providing data and tools for HCC and utility companies to coordinate and plan works, reducing the impact on congestion and journey times
- informing the travelling public, elected representatives, transport authorities, emergency services and the haulage industry about current and future roadworks in Hertfordshire
- enabling neighbouring local authorities and public bodies to share services and reduce costs by using a peer developed common system, which can be custom integrated into their own local services
- reducing customer service costs with a channel shift from telephone enquiries to self-served enquiries via the roadworks.org website
with better planning and coordination of works
with the increase in self-served enquiries
and better journey times