Digital Processes Work… but avoid “doing a DVLA”!

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Digital processes can transform business operations; however, it is important to avoid scenarios like the recent digital driving licence launch debacle, by ensuring that correct planning and implementation processes are in place. Failure to do so can result in a less than ideal scenario.

It’s fair to say that the DVLA’s latest attempt to go paperless did not go well. The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency launched its new digital system – designed to replace the paper counterpart driving licence – with a loud fanfare. However, according to Government Computing, just hours later, the online service crashed, leaving drivers and car hire firms in limbo.

The new online service will allow drivers to view and share up-to-date details of their driving record online – or print a summary, thus eliminating the need for a paper licence. It also creates a code that motorists can share with employers or vehicle hire firms, allowing temporary access to their licence details.

Transport minister Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon said, upon launching the online view licence service, that it would be beneficial to UK industry as well as helping to improve road safety. The scheme is predicted to save millions of pounds for motorists, while reducing administrative workload. However, users were left frustrated after high demand resulted in the DVLA website crashing.

In a statement, the DVLA admitted that “some customers” had experienced problems accessing the digital service, with Chief executive Oliver Morley saying: “We are aware some customers are experiencing issues with the website and we are working very hard to resolve this as quickly as possible. We are sorry for any inconvenience.”

According to a variety of reports, the crash caused chaos for car hire firms, who struggled to access the new system. A report in The Telegraph spoke of motorists “facing a car hire fiasco” – and The Express newspaper carried the headline: “Furious drivers blast DVLA ‘farce’ as website crashes on day paper licence is abolished”.

This isn’t the first time that the DVLA has slipped up – back in October, a similar situation occurred, during its online vehicle taxation service launch. Users were temporarily unable to access the service due to high volumes of traffic, prompting the agency to apologise. Clearly, both instances serve as a good example of how things can go wrong.

At Dajon, we implement solid planning and implementation processes, and have already helped organisations such as The British Exploring Society, The Royal Society of Chemistry and The National Army Museum to make the digital switch. Read our case studies here: http://www.dajon.co.uk/case-studies and get in touch to arrange an informal chat about your requirements: http://www.dajon.co.uk/contact-us

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