Adoption commitments

The commitments you need to meet to become a member of Open Digital Planning

1. Explain the Open Digital Planning project to your colleagues

Point your colleagues, planning service teams and key decision makers towards the Open Digital Planning website, sign up to our mailing list, and attend our regular Show & Tells to familiarise yourself with the project and the journey that partner councils are going on.

2. Sign the Local Digital Declaration

Partner councils agree to modern ways of designing and developing digital services, in line with the principles of the Local Digital Declaration and the Government Technology Code of Practice. Sign up today.

3. Make sure IT are involved from the start

The responsible people in the project team clearly understand the requirements and processes for launching and running Open Digital Planning services. Integrations with existing business software products are defined in collaboration with relevant systems specialists. Key people in IT, digital, customer experience and web teams are consulted.

4. Make sure senior staff are involved from the start

Endorsements to implement Open Digital Planning services are given by senior stakeholders including Directors involved in planning, IT, transformation and finance.

5. Publish your Geographic Information Systems (GIS) layers

Certain geospatial datasets are available in a machine readable format that can be consumed by Open Digital Planning services. More will be added to this list over time; the first four are:

  • Article 4 directions
  • Conservation areas
  • Listed buildings
  • Tree preservation orders

6. Assemble the right team

People you nominate from your existing team, or recruit specifically to join the project team, have the right mix of skills and experience and can commit the required time for project activities, depending on the level of involvement you choose. Your team has strong links with the planning service in your council, and will slot into the Open Digital Planning team's established working practices, which are based on agile software development principles.

7. Secure data approvals

Data protection impact assessments, data protection agreements and privacy notices are approved following conversations with Data Protection Officers and information governance teams.

8. Send Notifications using GOV.UK Notify

All notifications to applicants from the Open Digital Planning services are sent using the open source GOV.UK Notify platform.

9. Adopt GOV.UK pay

All payments received through Open Digital Planning services are processed using the open source GOV.UK Pay payments platform via Stripe. Your finance team supports this.

10. Collect and share your metrics

All partners take part in our metrics working group to measure the performance of new and existing software through regular reporting, time recording and comparison against historic data. This supports the case for further funding and adoption.

11. Learn and build capability

Project team members are encouraged to pursue training opportunities to hone new digital skills, and in turn will brief and train planning service staff on the new products and engage them in research and testing activities.

12. Promote the use of Open Digital Planning services

Councils use their websites and digital communications channels to encourage applicants to use the Open Digital Planning Guidance and Application services. Project team members lead peer-to-peer conversations with colleagues and counterparts in other councils to inform and educate them about the products. Opportunities to take part in occasional presentations and conferences are shared among team members.