Openreach is always looking to improve how it works and the services provided to customers, which is why it is now making use of Ordnance Survey’s web mapping service, OS OnDemand.
As the guardian of the local access network, the infrastructure that delivers the data, broadband and voice services to homes and businesses, Openreach, a BT group business, has to carry out thousands of streetworks across the country. Through the reliance on the Streetworks Notification System, which allows utility companies, telecoms operators and their subcontractors to issue street work notifications electronically, Openreach was subject to significant fines when notification errors were made.
As a result, in 2009–10, Openreach incurred a large sum for Fixed Penalty Notices.
Openreach now uses an improved process underpinned by Ordnance Survey’s OS OnDemand web mapping service.
When street works are required, any one of 3 000 Openreach Job Originators logs onto the EToN Streetworks Notification System. The system pulls in basic data from the National Street Gazetteer and then instantly links to the most current OS MasterMap Topography Layer – the nation’s most detailed geographic database – straight from OS OnDemand.
The difference in data detail and quality is considerable, with OS MasterMap Topography Layer providing information on road geometry, house numbers, landmarks and building names, all of which can then be used to validate the location and provide additional detail when planning street works.
Having access to detailed and up-to-date data also helps the job originators make better decisions, for example, whether the work can be confined to the pavement when no notification is needed, or whether diversions, traffic lights or bollards will be needed, and if so, how many.
Once planning is completed, the accurate coordinates captured from OS MasterMap Topography Layer in OS OnDemand are automatically transferred into the Streetworks Notification System and sent electronically to the highway authorities.
OS OnDemand has revolutionised how Openreach uses mapping. In the case of permits once approved, Openreach contractors can then access the system and use the data to help carry out the work, on time and in the right place.
Because the mapping available from OS OnDemand is hosted and served directly from Ordnance Survey, it is always the most up-to-date available. As a result, there is no need for an additional Openreach server to host and maintain the data, which is a significant saving in its own right.
As the data is accurate and current, the number of notice penalties incurred due to using incorrect or out-of-date information is massively reduced.
Thanks to the use of OS OnDemand, Openreach expects to reduce fines to a minimal level annually.