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New online system to cut Blue Badge application time

27/02/2019

People eligible for Blue Badges can apply in a fraction of the previous time, thanks to a new system launched by Northamptonshire County Council.

The Blue Badge scheme allows disabled people to park closer to their destination than other drivers, as they are less able to take public transport or walk long distances. The new service will mean applicants can complete the entire process without the time-consuming task of sending their supporting documents in the post, allowing people to upload documents instead, including proof of identity, and photographs. This fully integrated, end-to-end process will allow people with disabilities to access Blue Badges quickly, giving them the freedom and confidence to travel with ease.

Libraries across the county will offer assistance in completing applications where people can receive free, one-to-one support.

The new online system launched on Tuesday 5th February and is available via Northamptonshire County Council's website.

Cllr Ian Morris, cabinet member for transport, highways and environment said: “Blue badges are a lifeline for many disabled people, and it’s important to make the application process as quick and easy as possible. Speeding up the process will allow people to access the tools they need to travel independently, and with confidence.”

The work behind the Blue Badge application project

A new system to help people apply for disabled parking permits across Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire has been developed by LGSS Digital, using a design developed in collaboration with Cambridgeshire in 2016. 

Using an Agile project management approach, the application was developed in just 12 weeks by people based within all three partner organisations. The low-code application, known as BadgeAble, automates manual tasks that can be complex or time-consuming. Low-code developments are an alternative to the traditional method of software development, which enables developers to focus time and energy on developing functionality that makes a difference to users.

Not only will applicants receive their badges more quickly thanks to reduced processing time, but each organisation is estimated to save a minimum of £50,000 a year by switching from largely paper-based systems to a fully digital service. Early indications from one authority suggest that take-up of the digital service will be well over 90% which is outstanding.

Find out more about the other projects LGSS Digital are working on here.

NCC Blue Badge website

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