“Data! Data! Data! I can't make bricks without clay”, impatiently cries Sherlock Holmes in The Adventure of the Copper Beeches.
Your mind works more like Sherlock Holmes’s than you think, we rely on data to do all sorts of things; check our travel time, improve our businesses, decide where to go on holiday. Data is important.
I’m sure by now you have all heard the presentations and read the articles about “Big Data.” And I’m sure you are probably even collecting and studying KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) yourself, as a tool to more effectively manage limited resources.
You therefore know the need to gather as much data as possible when reconstructing facts and making logical deductions. Data has always been and still remains the basis on which objective conclusions are drawn, the basis of the scientific approach for understanding the world.
For the parking world, this is no different, as there are difficulties in not knowing one’s profession; the quantities of spaces, the number of employees or the size and value of business supporting parking operators.
This adds to the challenges for us in our work to assist the parking profession and raise standards within it. It also remains a challenge to any newcomers to the sector. Companies evolve continuously. For example, car manufacturers are developing self-parking vehicles; camera technology companies are developing systems to support parking management; financial service companies are processing more and more payments for parking operators. These organisations moving into parking do not fully appreciate the mechanisms of the parking sector, to help them make good business decisions.
In 2013, the BPA started to collect data to understand the size and shape of the UK parking profession. This major project, to update and gather all sorts of static parking data is being kick-started once again. After all it is the foundation of the important Data-Information-Knowledge-Wisdom pyramid.
Today’s data will assist tomorrow’s discoveries.
So, we are working with the International Parking Institute (IPI) on this new data initiative to advance the parking profession.
This survey is a critical step to collect specific data on our members and our profession. All data will be aggregated and anonymised prior to sharing these valuable benchmarks for our profession.
Now is your chance to benchmark your organisation and contribute to this ongoing research project.
If your organisation is involved in the management of parking and you can provide the data on car parks, spaces and revenue, please take this short survey that will take less than ten minutes to answer, and help us create a true picture of the sector.
 BPA and Skyblue Research, The Size and Shape of the UK Parking Profession, 2013