How you manage car parking is integral to your workplace travel plan. Having a zero-parking policy may be an option for businesses in town and city centres where public transport is good. On the other hand, providing plentiful free car parking is likely to encourage your employees to use their cars.
Even if your business offers a lot of parking space, you may struggle to cater for all your staff and visitors. You could also find yourself unable or unwilling to provide more space, due to the expense involved or a lack of available land.
One way to manage car parking is to introduce a needs-based parking permit system. This can allow you to allocate guaranteed parking to those with mobility difficulties, perhaps those who car share or with caring responsibilities, or some employees with a clear business need to access parking facilities on a regular basis.
Alternatively, you could charge staff for car parking. This is unlikely to prove popular with employees unless it is pitched clearly and fairly. It may help to make your staff aware that the business cost of providing each parking space is typically £400 to £1,000 per year.
You could counterbalance parking charges by offering incentives for not driving into work. These can include entry into prize draws, providing shopping vouchers and awarding salary bonuses. You should be aware that salary bonuses are taxable.
You may also consider using the revenue from new car park charges to fund some of your workplace travel plan incentives. This way employees will be able to see the balance of 'give and take' in your travel plan and can help staff to accept change.