News and press

Thursday, 16th February 2017

Planning Portal - the home of planning applications in England and Wales - launches new digital service

Planning portal homepage on devices

Planning Portal has relaunched its website and underlying digital platform to facilitate increased mobile device usage and provide multi-language support for both English and Welsh languages.

  • 90% of planning and building applications are now made online, with 140,000 registered users making 2,000 applications a day

  • Planning Portal needed to provide multi-device and multi-language support

  • New website and service based on Jadu Continuum CMS, with Civica providing the application process technology

Around 90% of all planning and building applications in England and Wales are done online via the Planning Portal, which is the official entry point. The site receives more than 2,000 applications every working day from its 140,000 registered users, and the number continues to rise.

“We were seeing a steady rise in online applications, an 8% increase from 2015 to 2016, so required a robust website and digital platform to support this, which could also facilitate growth in mobile and tablet usage” said Sarah Chilcott, Planning Portal Managing Director.

Sarah continues: “An average of 10% of the traffic to our website is from tablets and 22% from mobile – the need to deliver a good experience to these visitors is clear. As part of our commitment to accessibility, we also needed to provide multi-language support for our Welsh users.

The new Planning Portal is based on Jadu Continuum CMS, a solution that updates every two weeks, meaning we don’t have to endure big three or six monthly upgrades. The maintenance is iterative and ongoing, so disruption is kept to an absolute minimum

“Having listened and responded to the needs of our users, we now provide a mobile-friendly site. We’re always looking forward and will continue to iterate based on customer feedback.”

As part of the project, Jadu developed a multi-language workflow engine that makes it easy for language translators to be involved in the content authoring and publishing process for multi-language content without the need for advanced technical skills.

“Delivering multi-language support with translation workflows means Jadu can now offer Welsh public sector organisations something unique in the market”, says Suraj Kika, Chief Executive Officer at Jadu.

The new website was designed by award winning digital design agency, Spacecraft Digital, and the technology behind the application process is supplied by Civica, a market leader in critical software applications, digital solutions and outsourcing services.

Users will still be able to access the forms and information that were available on the old site, however the content is now mobile and tablet friendly with a brand new design. For a website that processed half a million applications in 2016, it was crucial for a multi-language, responsive platform to be implemented, allowing users to have easy access to the information and services they need.

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