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Mobile Mapping Survey: Bath and North East Somerset Council

Bath and North East Somerset unitary authority has responsibility for almost all local government functions within the district. Getmapping's imagery captured from a mobile mapping suvrey enabled them to save costs whilst improving staff productivity and customer satisfaction.

Bath and North East Somerset had specific objectives to meet

Bath and North East Somerset (B&NES) had a directive across the Authority to:

  • Reduce the amount of staff car travel, including cost, time and CO2 emissions
  • Improve customer interaction, especially over the phone
  • Provide a photographic record of roads and buildings within the Authority
  • Significantly improve the Authority’s levels of Customer Service at the same time as reducing costs

Street level survey data was captured and fed into their GIS

B&NES Council commissioned Getmapping to capture street level imagery of key settlement areas within the district and then to integrate the data into their Cloud GIS, which was already supplied and managed by Getmapping.

Street level 360° photography was captured via Getmapping’s Mobile Mapping Service. Its geometric accuracy combined with its ability to capture measurements and incorporate GIS data make it the best “visit a location without leaving your desk” application available anywhere. Street Layer functionality within the GIS includes:

  • Full NLPG (National Land & Property Gazetteer) integration with search made on an address or UPRN (unique property reference number), with multiple viewing angles displayed in up to three windows
  • The ability to view imagery with OS MasterMap or other PSMA data in a split screen arrangement
  • The ability take point and line measurements at centimetre accuracy with full CSV data export
image of Getmapping's Street Layer data
High resolution, 360° street-level photography and GIS data

The project broke even within a year

The Project broke even within a year, with more savings to come:

  • Reducing staff travel costs:  The Authority was spending approximately £1m per year but is now able to show a feasible saving of £3 for every £1 spent on Street Layer. The reduction in car usage has put the Authority on course to meet the required CO2 reductions
  • Planning, Highways & Property reporting reduced site visits: Typically a five minute site inspection can involve an entire half day out of the office, however Street Layer enables virtual site visits from the office
  • Improved customer interaction: All photography is stored in the cloud, giving response times of around 4 seconds. Customer Service Call Centre agents can see what the caller is calling about - if a caller is complaining about a neighbour’s tree the agent can “visit” the location from their desk,if a caller is reporting a failed street light, the agent can instantly identify the failed light and significantly speed up the repair process
  • Validating claims and eliminating fraud: Street Layer has proved invaluable in cases where callers have been found attempting to make fraudulent claims
  • Enhancing the planning process and creating a permanent photographic record: The Planning Department can look at a property and take accurate detailed measurements on their screens. The imagery in place represents a marker point as to the actual appearance of the area at a given point in time. In due course this will give Planners the opportunity to compare “old with new” and aid the Planning enforcement process
  • PR: In addition, Getmapping’s integration of its street level imagery has won Bath and North East Somerset Council the GeoPlace Exemplar Award for Services
“Getmapping street imagery and its integration into Getmapping’s Online GIS has made it possible to reduce our staff car usage. Planning, Property and Highways are all reporting that they are reducing the number of site visits. The reduction is sufficient to pay for the service and we have achieved that with ease. Elsewhere our CRM team are reporting improved response times from being able to find and visualise the property at the outset of a customer call. Being able to validate what is being reported is now much easier. All the imagery is date stamped which is a great help in determining precisely when events occur.”Martin Laker, GIS Manager for Bath & North East Somerset Council

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