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  • Huntingdonshire District Council has avoided additional expenditure of £100 000 per year but at the same time brings in additional revenues of approximately £180 000, thanks to its use of GIS and integrated land and property data.

    Dan Horrex, Corporate Systems and Information Manager

Huntingdonshire District Council used geographic information from Ordnance Survey together with its Local Land and Property Gazetteer (LLPG). As a result of data sharing, the council estimated that it would incur an additional expenditure of £100 000 if the council had not implemented the geographical information system (GIS) solution and generated an additional £180 000 in revenue.

The challenge

Huntingdonshire is a mainly rural area in the east of England. The council serves a population of over 160 000 people and has a strong commitment to providing excellent customer service.

In 2005, the Cabinet Office report Transformational Government, stated that ‘data sharing is integral to transforming services’. Huntingdonshire District Council needed to modernise and improve service delivery. The challenge was to modernise the approach to innovatively and efficiently deliver high-quality and customer- focused services. The council was operating four separate GIS and had at least five separate address datasets, as well as dozens of other datasets with various copies of sometimes identical data in use in numerous departments. This resulted in inefficient working practices, for example, the same name and address data was often held in different formats in different systems, making it impossible for the council to do any kind of corporate-wide data analysis.

The solution

The council has been able to use numerous integrated datasets with its corporate GIS to improve a range of council services and make significant annual cost savings.

The council initially focused on improving the quality of its data by creating a new LLPG from five existing major datasets, which was subsequently matched to the National Land and Property Gazetteer (NLPG), resolving around 30 000 data inconsistencies. The council’s solution included a corporate GIS and a selected suite of products from ESRI® (UK). The corporate GIS solution underpins the delivery of existing and newly-available Ordnance Survey spatial data and is based on centralised database technology. This solution is fully integrated with back-office systems, allowing for use of a common web services application framework to provide Intranet and Internet GIS capabilities for the council.

The vision is to continue to identify and utilise technology as a means to realising savings, both current and future, by improving the council’s business processes, infrastructure, services, information and decision-making. It will continue to manage, maintain and effectively utilise accurate, reliable and consistent geographic information to increase the responsiveness and efficiency of the council.

The challenge

  • Additional £180 000 collected in business rates and council tax revenues.
  • The council estimated that it would incur an additional expenditure of £100 000 if it had not implemented the GIS solution.
  • Automatic optimisation of refuse collection rounds, leading to saved officer time and an improved service to the citizen.
  • 4 000 citizens a month now use the online, map-based planning application process.
  • Call-centre staff are now able to offer a more rapid and accurate response to enquiries.

The products used

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