Northants CC

How Northamptonshire achieved a four star rating for bus pass information

Northamptonshire County Council recently received the maximum four star rating from Better connected after putting their application service for older persons’ bus passes online.

This seemed an ideal opportunity to review the information we published about applying for bus passes on the website, with the aim of creating a slick customer journey for this task from whichever page the customer uses to enter the site.

One clear landing page

The bus pass information was divided into two clear sections, older person’s bus pass and disabled person’s bus pass. We know that customers would be applying for one or the other, so the information could be split in two. On the landing page for bus passes we offer only these two options, as well as a link to a related page – school bus passes. This makes it easy for people landing on this page to select the option they need.

Important information up front

Once a customer has selected which bus pass they require, the page first details some important information applying to everybody: when they are entitled to a free bus pass, what the free bus pass entitles them to, and a clear link to apply. It’s our policy to provide help in libraries to those who are not easily able to make the application online, so we made that clear at the point of applying.

Third party online application service

The online application was a third party service that we bought. The web team worked with the project manager to ensure that our accessibility standards were applied to this, and that links back to our site from the application site were contextual and made sense.

All roads lead to Rome

The customer journey described above makes sense if we assume that any customer looking for the information finds it using our site navigation. However, we know that is not the case and indeed approximately 60% of our visitors enter our site via a search engine, so will not necessarily land on the site homepage. We therefore needed to ensure that the content was optimized for the relevant searches, that there were sensible links in our A-Z list and that our internal search turned up the right results leading to the right page.

Keeping the customer in mind

By making sure the customer journey was simple and clear to follow, important information was made available up front, sensible key words were used throughout and the online application service was audited for accessibility and usability, we have designed a site that is easy to find and easy to use.

Northamptonshire County Council received the maximum four star rating for their online bus pass application, with "simple information and a good introduction to the online form". For more from Better connected, click here.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of The Information Daily, its parent company or any associated businesses.

Comments

Latest

Outdated infrastructure and an increasingly fragmented market threaten the future of technology-enabled integrated care.

County Durham voters back devolution in the North-East, Sir Digby Jones considers run for West Midlands mayor…

The recent launch of The Mayoral Tech Manifesto 2016 on London’s digital future, sets out a clear agenda…

The manufacturing industry is currently facing scrutiny from parties concerned for its survival. Far from facing…

Almost a year ago, I made some predictions for what would take place in government and public sector customer…

Sheffield, Warrington and Doncaster announce cuts, Lincolnshire is held to data ransom, fight begins for West…

Working for an education charity delivering numeracy and literacy programmes in primary schools, I’m only…

Historically, the entrance of new generations into the workplace has caused varying levels of disruption. The…

Following another commendation for digital services, Surrey County Council's Web and Digital Services Manager,…

We cannot carry on spinning the roulette wheel that is cyber security, knowing that the “castle and moat”…

This week David Cameron wades into row over £69m of cuts planned by Oxfordshire CC; Stoke on Trent plans…