Doing it Online

By on 18/10/2013 in Blog, Deputy Leader

Cllr Ian Ward

Cllr Ian Ward

Birmingham City Council Deputy Leader, Councillor Ian Ward talks about how more Birmingham residents than ever are making the shift to accessing the council services they need online.

As part of our Customer First Transformation Programme, Birmingham City Council has been investing in modern technologies, enabling customers who find it easier to go online to do so.

Service users can use the technology wherever and whenever it suits them best - it's available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and can be accessed from home or on the move. This gives a quicker and easier way of accessing services, in addition to the more traditional methods of using the phone or personally visiting council offices.

Many council services can now be accessed online, and www.birmingham.gov.uk has a wealth of information available about all the different services available.

There is also a link from the home page to www.birmingham.gov.uk/doitonline which contains over 100 electronic forms offering a wide range of transactions, ranging from reporting a missed refuse collection to setting up a Benefits claim, from reporting a pothole in the road to making a council tax payment.

By setting up an online account enquiries can be tracked easily, with full instructions provided on the website.

And for those people who don't have a PC but do have a smart phone, a mobile app  has been developed (both for android and Apple phones)  - this can be downloaded from the Apple store or from the BCC website, www.birmingham.gov.uk/app.

The app contains a wealth of information delivered through 8 information widgets: News and Alerts; Councillors; Leisure Centres; Libraries; Schools; Jobs; Recycling and Find My Nearest –  the image below shows how easy it is to use.

It also has a “Report It” widget which enables citizens to request a variety of services which are integrated into the Customer Relationship Management System.   The types of requests that can be made include:  reporting Wheelie Bin/Recycling Box problems; requesting Street Cleaning; reporting issues with Street Lighting/Signs; requesting services as a New Occupier; reporting Missed Collections; reporting  Dumped Rubbish; requesting Pest Control services; reporting Road/Pavement defects; requesting Large Item Collections; and requesting Tree Pruning.  Before using the “Report It” services an online app  has to be set up- this can be done very easily via the app itself or on the website.

In the period February to August 2013 there have been 2630 downloads of the Apple app and 5170 downloads of the web app.

As a delighted customer recently said:

“I just wanted to send a quick note to say how impressed I am at the way in which our missed collection was handled. I was able to go online, register the missed collection and, within 24 hours it was rectified. What was even more impressive was the fact that my concern was trackable online and that I received a text update once the collection had taken place. It would be easy to take this for granted but it strikes me as both incredibly efficient and up-to-date that our council manages its services in this way. Great work and thanks!”

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