LGA research report - Street manager survey

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Since July 2020, all authorities have had to transition onto the Street Manager software to manage their street works. During  Autumn 2020 the Local Government Association (LGA) conducted an online survey of councils with responsibility for

street works to understand the impact of Street Manager, and whether or not there were any costs or resources needed to implement the new system. In particular, the LGA wished to know whether councils were required by legislation or local need to

maintain their existing street works management systems alongside Street Manager and the cost implications if this was the case. Overall, the survey achieved 51 responses, which gave a response rate of 34 per cent.

Key findings

  • Most councils (96 per cent/49 respondents) said they ran a street works management system alongside Street Manager.
  • Eight out of 10 (80 per cent/39 respondents) said this was to meet the legislative requirements of the Highway Act 1980, New Roads and Street Works Act 1998 or the Traffic Management Act 2004.
  • Ninety-four per cent (46 respondents) of those that ran two systems linked them together automatically. All but one of these (98 per cent/45 respondents) used an application programming interface (API).
  • Just over a third (34 per cent/17 respondents) said they were fairly or very likely to review permit fees in light of the fact that Street Manager does not identify conflicts in requests for permits and so requires extra resources, and just over two-fifths (44 per cent/22 respondents) said they were not very likely or not at all likely to review them.
  • Just over eight out of 10 councils (82 per cent/41 respondents) said they were using, or intended to use, additional modules of a third-party provider (eg Elgin/one.network) to mitigate the limited co-ordination functionality of Street Manager.
  • Just over a third of councils (35 per cent/17 respondents) said that, once Street Manager had the required functionality to meet their statutory duties, they would see out contracts for their existing systems and then solely use Street Manager. Another five respondents (10 per cent) said they would dispense with their existing systems immediately.
  • Councils paid annually on average about £44,000 in fees for the street works management system they were running alongside Street Manager.
  • On top of this, the average additional annual costs of running Street Manager alongside their existing council system(s) was around £26,000. The costs included maintaining a connection between the two systems, such as with an API, accessing historical data and using additional modules to mitigate the limited co-ordination functionality of Street Manager. 
  • When considering these costs together the average annual cost for councils was around £68,000, with county councils’ costs notably higher at about £84,000. 
  • Additionally, councils estimated the cost of training staff to use Street Manager, up to the end of the 2021/22 financial year, to be about £8,000 on average.