Organisations of all kinds demand evidence before they can justify strategic investment. This new case study – ‘Return on Investment Analysis: Assessing the socio-economic value of address and street data to Nottingham City Council‘– should be of huge interest to all local authority decision-makers. In it, the findings show that for every £1 invested in the use of accurate and integrated addressing, there lies the potential to make efficiency savings and increase revenue organisation-wide by up to £6. The report predicts that the benefits could generate a NPV of £5.7 million over the period 2023 to 2026.
Using data to return hard efficiencies
Nottingham City Council is seeing impressive returns from its investment in geocoded address and street data, and the use of that data across the organisation. Results of an in-depth study study show the council generated an estimated Return on Investment (ROI) of over 4:1 between 2018 and 2022. That indicates a Net Present Value (NPV) of an estimated £4.1 million – the difference between the present value of cash inflows and the present value of cash outflows.
Over the whole study period from 2018 - 2026 the total net benefits after applying the Treasury Discount Rate are predicted to be just over £9.8 million representing an overall RoI of just over 6:1, but equally significant are insights supporting decision making in key council strategic initiatives including climate change adaptation.
These returns on investment are made achievable by making better use of the data held within each authority’s Local Land and Property Gazetteer (LLPG) and Local Street Gazetteer (LSG). The gains in efficiency are enabled through better integration of the Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN) and Unique Street Reference Number (USRN) that sit at the heart of these Gazetteers.
There are a growing number of examples in local authorities of the streamlining and simplifying of processes, from school admissions to planning applications through the use of these datasets. However, convincing decision makers that investment in their management and updating is important and will deliver a robust Return on Investment is often challenging. At the current time when resources are tight, this report demonstrates invaluable insight into the quantifiable benefits of the council’s address and street gazetteers and evidence of delivery of a best value service.
As the facilitator of accurate addressing for local government in England and Wales, GeoPlace recognised it would be useful to demonstrate these insights through a case study that focused on the achievements of one local authority in detail. The precedent was set through earlier work in 2022, establishing the breadth and depth of benefits already achieved. By better-integrating addressing in their organisation-wide systems, local authorities in England and Wales have realised increased revenue and efficiency savings of an estimated £250 million over the last 5 years.
For this study, an agreement was reached early in 2023 for Nottingham City Council and GeoPlace to work with the independent strategy advisors ConsultingWhere, to undertake the work using a straightforward cost benefit analysis. This will be of enormous benefit to department heads seeking to understand the advantage of using the UPRN and USRN.
As a step-change in functionality, by integrating UPRNs and USRNs this study shows the value of different departments utilising authoritative address and street data. The report examined 6 specific areas:
- Data integration, the total impact of integrating addressing data from 2018 to 2026 using the UPRN is estimated to be around £2.4 million
- Collection of business rates, with an impact at an estimated uplift of £6.2 million in newly-identified business rates
- Children’s social care and early help services, the total impact of investing in better addressing will be an estimated increase of £0.4 million
- Safer housing, the overall efficiency gain to the council for licensing and enforcement is in the range of £215,000 per annum
- Waste management, the total impact over the period 2018 - 2026 is estimated at £0.6 million
- Workplace parking levy, a conservative estimate suggests that the direct savings would be at least £5,000 per annum.
Other social and environmental benefits were identified but not quantified at this time including:
- Electoral registration
- Climate change, including net zero neighbourhood proposal. Retrofit and energy assessment.
GeoPlace welcomes direct enquiries from local authority teams who’d like to learn more, free of charge, about how to achieve this 8:1 their own Return on Investment.
For more insights on the benefits realisation of address and street data, download the full report here.