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Better Connected changes for 2016-17: paid for reviews

Mon 03 Oct 2016
Vicky Sargent

In my last post I mentioned that Better Connected would be introducing paid for BC reviews.

These will enable councils that have made improvements to their website since Better Connected overall results were published, to get this recognised in the scores published on this site.

We probably wouldn’t even have considered making such a change had there not been a clear demand from this from Better Connected subscribers.

Clearly, councils that have fixed mistakes or shortcomings marked down in Better Connected survey assessments want the opportunity to have this work assessed again, and their published BC scores upgraded as appropriate.

This service – which has to be paid for - is distinct from a BC challenge, when a council believes there to be a mistake or oversight to in an assessment. Such challenges (around half of which are upheld) will continue to be investigated free of charge.

Paid-for reviews will work like this:

  • Reviews will be offered for individual tasks whether service-based or mobile or search/navigation/A-Z
  • The reviewer will re-assess exactly the same question set for the task being reviewed
  • New results from the review(s) will be added to the existing results on the council’s Better Connected web pages and be substituted for the old results in re-aggregating scores for the overall site ranking. So, for example, an improved score for a newly reviewed task might take a site that was 2* overall up to 3* if the new score(s) were sufficiently good.

You can see how these reviews will be presented on results pages by looking at Derby City’s pages. We piloted the service with their ‘missed bin’ task. When the task was originally reviewed for Derby in December 2015, the online form for reporting a missed bin was missing. Consequently the site only scored 1* for the task. Reviewed again in July 2016, the task scored 4*. This has had the effect of raising Derby’s overall Better Connected score for 2015-16 to 3*.

If you look at Derby’s City’s results pages, it makes clear that there has been a review and what has happened as a result (we think it makes it clear, you’ll tell us if it doesn’t!). We believe it is important to make the process completely clear and transparent to all Better Connected site users.

We will not offer paid-for reviews until the final BC results have been published in May and the process of results challenges is completed by the end of June.

Paid for reviews will then be available until a month before the next full year’s BC survey results are due the following May.

I mentioned that the service needs to be paid for: the charge is £795 + VAT for up to two task reviews with additional bundles of two available for an additional charge at the same rate.

We will be setting up an online self-service apply and pay function for councils that would like to use the service, but if you would like to book a paid for review ahead of this, please email us on



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