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Face-to-face: The future of SIA licencing?

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This month the SIA has stopped issuing paper based licence applications and introduced a brand new way to apply. This new process will make it quicker, easier and cheaper for you to get your licence, which doesn’t involve sending away all of your most valuable documents.

The SIA have teamed up with the Post Office to create a more cost effective, environmentally friendly way to apply. With the Post Office already offering a broad range of government services, it seems that this is the way SIA licencing has been heading for a while.

“We are very pleased to be providing the face to face element of the SIA’s new online licence application service and supporting the delivery of modern digital services on behalf of government.” – Head of Government Services at the Post Office, Kevin Seller.

So what is so easy about this way of doing it?

The entire application form is now completed online so no paper is used, meaning no struggling to sort out postage and no have to send off all of your original I.D. documents. All that is required is for the online form to be completed, receive a confirmation email and then go to the nearest participating Post Office (and with over 700 involved there is bound to be one nearby). This will take all of the inconvenience out for you, making it much more practical and stress-free. Post Office staff will check and return all of your documents, right there and then, and will take a digital photograph and a digital version of your signature. They will then send all of this off electronically to the SIA where it is added to the information you have previously provided. All you need to do is pay the application fee at the Post Office and they’ll do the rest and more importantly, you won’t be charged to for process. Once the SIA has received the fully completed application form and supporting evidence, they will continue with their checks as they always have done, and a licence decision is usually made within 25 working days.

“We are really pleased to launch this new service with the Post Office; this is a crucial step as we move away from a paper based system. The face to face element of the new service will reduce errors, which can cause applications to be rejected, and will help to discourage fraud.” – SIA Director of Service Delivery, Stephen McCormick.

This new procedure will make applying for a licence a lot easier, and should also quicken the entire application process and with more people than ever applying for the different types of licence, do you think this new, paper free, cost effective way is the future?

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