Transformation projects improving Council service delivery

Councillors received an update on Wednesday 29 November 2017 on the progress and impact of projects being undertaken through the Council's Transformation Programme.

The aim of the Transformation Programme is to take forward a proactive approach to public service reform over the period 2015 to 2020, by developing new ways of working to sustain high quality service delivery across the Council, whilst achieving a challenging scale of savings. 25 projects presently make up the Programme, with a further six now complete.  

The Strategic Policy and Resources Committee heard that the total savings accrued from the Programme to date has reached £3 million. This has already surpassed the expected level by £300,000, and a range of improvements to service delivery have also been achieved:

- Home First: the Council's Housing service has reviewed how support is provided to people experiencing homelessness, aiming wherever possible to settle them in permanent accommodation from the outset. As a result, the use of temporary accommodation has lessened; and suitable housing is being provided faster therefore reducing the duration and stigma of homelessness for many people.

- Facilities Management: the transfer of school janitorial staff to Tayside Contracts has streamlined management and operational arrangements, making the janitorial service more efficient and flexible. Very positive feedback has been received from Head Teachers (and Business Managers in secondary schools) and service improvement is continuing with enhanced arrangements for emergency out of hours responses.

- Grounds Maintenance: the development of an Engage, Empower and Equip Project led by Community Greenspace Rangers to encourage residents to take part in improvement activities such as paths work and grounds maintenance. Additionally, a shift to seven days a week service delivery has made more efficient use of grounds maintenance equipment.

-  Review of Delivery of Class Contact Time: greater flexibility in how schools can deliver the full curriculum has been made possible through this project.

- Modern Licenses, Permissions and Approvals: the Council's Licensing Team has moved the application process for taxi, private hire car and other civic licences to an online portal where applicants can create an account and apply for licences. This has improved the process for the public, as their account holds information which speeds up making applications and significantly reduces the level of administrative work within the Council. As a result, staff in the team are able to take a more proactive role in identifying unlicensed traders and improving standards across the area.

Council Leader and Convener of the Strategic Policy & Resource Committee, Councillor Ian Campbell said: "Local authorities face substantial challenges to continue delivering effective services into the future, and we have had to look at how best we can achieve this.

By taking forward the Transformation Programme, the Council has focussed proactively on finding ways to streamline and improve services. It is clear from this report that we have made some very effective changes to how we work, while simultaneously making savings, which I am delighted are higher than expected at this point in the Programme. Ultimately this delivers clear benefits to our residents."