The Efficiency Review, prompted by last year's Gershon Report, has given rise to new incentives to drive council website development. Socitm said in its briefing paper, Efficiency, transformation and the Council Website, that Councils need to exploit the efficiencies of "citizen self-service" via websites.
"A slice of the annual 2.5% efficiency gain expected of local authorities over the next three years could potentially come from transferring activity from mediated services [in person or on the phone] to self-service websites," the briefing said.
However, this goal would only be achieved if websites had well-developed transactional capacities, were simple to find, easy to use and were promoted effectively, the briefing said.
The Socitm paper summarised what services councils should consider putting online and the reasons people return to websites they have used. It also detailed the best performing councils websites in England and how well council websites are performing on priority outcomes.