Parking is a high-volume service in urban areas. Renewing parking permits is one of the most important tasks provided by parking services.
All London boroughs and metropolitan districts (69 councils in all). Note: this service is also provided by single-tier councils, but not tested in this survey in the interests of maintaining survey balance.
The councils that we tested handled this task reasonably well (38% achieving our standard). Another 29% of sites failed specifically because they did not offer an online renewal (designated by our survey as an essential question). There were also other issues, such as the difficulty of finding information about costs and essential information about the permit.
Check ‘coverage’ to see if your council has been surveyed. Go to councils page and select your council. Look for link to task report under 2016-17 results
NB Question highlighted in red is an ‘essential question’ that must be answered correctly for the council to meet the standard for this task. Questions highlighted in blue affect star ranking
|Questions to be answered "Yes"|
|• Does the home page lead me directly to the task?||84%|
|• Is the process for renewing the permit fully explained?||35%|
|• Can I renew my permit online?||58%|
|• Can I see how much the permit costs?||52%|
|• Am I told how I will receive my new permit?||19%|
|• Am I told when I will receive my new permit?||29%|
|• Can I also apply for a visitor's parking permit?||58%|
|• Can I find out the boundaries of my parking zone?||49%|
|• Does a Google search lead me to the task?||91%|
|• Does the service landing page provide a prominent link that takes me directly to this task?||83%|
|• Does a site search for the task return the correct result listed in the first five results?||93%|
|• Is there an entry in the A to Z index?||75%|
|• Would you recommend that other councils look at this implementation as an example of good practice?||6%|
|Out of date information, answered 'No'|
|• Did you come across any out-of-date information about this task?||6%|
|How effectively is this council promoting this as a task?|
|• How effectively is this council promoting this as a task?||2.2|
|Overall, how do you rate the journey plus task completion?|
|• Overall, how do you rate the journey plus task completion?||1.6|
Finding the task
Completing the task
The task of renewing and the task of applying for the first time were not adequately separated in many cases.
Online renewals were usually possible, but it wasn’t always clear whether this included the payment and, if so, how I could pay. There was often mention of a letter that I should have received, which would provide information about whether or not I could renew online.
Information about the cost of the permit was often hard to find, often in a lengthy ‘pdf’ that included a load of different parking costs, e.g. fines, car parking charges, etc.
Descriptions of visitor parking permits were sometimes poor. It wasn’t clear how many permits were in a book or how much time each visitor permit would provide.
It sometimes wasn’t clear whether or not I could order and buy a book of permits online.
Lots of detailed information and easy to find through all routes. I am very impressed that I can even print off my own permit.
Good promotion of this task and really good, clear information provided about the virtual parking permit scheme for residents. It’s really useful that the various charges for different car classes are displayed on the actual web page rather than in a ‘pdf’. There is clear guidance about the proof you need to provide and good information about how to access the online renewals system. The one thing it was not that clear about was how long the process would take, but it did say that I would be notified by email after completing the online process. I would definitely use the online method if I lived in Waltham Forest.
Very strong. I am impressed that I can also put in my street name to find more details about my controlled parking zone. The only detail missing is how long my permit will take to process, but other than that it is a full house!
We assessed this task primarily via the home page.