Over the past year, the LGA has worked with councils and public sector partners to develop a new improvement resource for the sector.
A test (‘beta’) version of the Transformation and Innovation Exchange was launched at our annual conference in July. It has been developed with councils, for councils, and will create an interactive space where they can come together to share learning and support each other towards continued innovation and transformation.
Using a range of case studies, guidance, tools, performance data, training and other resources, this tool opens up the possibilities for councils to further improve their performance and their services to residents.
The resource will help authorities identify improvement opportunities and useful support, such as peer challenges or wider sector-led resources. It has a particular focus on an understanding of local place and priority setting; leadership of place; financial planning and viability; organisational leadership and governance; and capacity to deliver.
We hope it will encourage internal discussion and give councils the ability to share their experiences with colleagues and between organisations.
The exchange’s resources include a self-assessment tool, which will help councils understand their current position and ambition for change by asking a series of questions. The responses will give an indication of the strengths and areas for further improvement for the organisation as a whole.
It also supports comparisons with other similar organisations and provides suggestions on next steps to progress priority areas of transformation.
The tool is aimed at senior corporate and political leadership teams, and at prompting a discussion before agreeing a consensus response that best represents the whole organisation.
However, anyone in the organisation can complete the self-assessment. One representative should be identified as a ‘super-user’ who has additional rights to see everyone’s contributions.
The self-assessment helps an organisation’s ambition for change, whether that is by process redesign to improve delivery; customer-centric design to improve customer experience and outcomes; greater commercialisation; taking a wider community focus to issues such as prevention; or by a mix of these.
For the best results, the LGA encourages widespread take-up and use of the self-assessment tool as this will make the exchange a resource that is constantly growing and keeping pace with changing ideas and priorities.
In this first year, we are keen for councils to try out the resources and provide substantial feedback on their experience of them, which will influence our next steps and help us further improve the Transformation and Innovation Exchange.
“The improvement tool, developed by councils, for councils, is an opportunity for councils to continue on their improvement journey. “By sharing resources and information, councils can reflect on their own performance at the same time as learning from other council experiences. This process will enable councils to prepare for potential challenges that they will face.”
Cllr Peter Fleming, Chairman of the LGA’s Improvement and Innovation Board
“Information is power, and enabling councils to better share their expertise and assess their work has the potential to bring huge benefits to the whole sector. “This is why we’ve worked with the LGA and others to develop the Transformation and Innovation Exchange tool to help councils to look at what they’re doing well and what could be done better.
“By encouraging more collaborative working, the exchange will help councils to deliver high quality services for local people.”
Rishi Sunak, Minister for Local Government