Feeds

Councils need performance management buy-in

Report recommends private sector input

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Performance management in local authorities needs more buy-in from across the organisation, concludes a new report from the National Computing Centre.

The NCC report, Performance Management in Local Authorities, looks at the way central government uses its key indicators by which to measure the performance of local authorities, of which IT is one enabler.

The report says councils would benefit substantially from private sector input into how performance management can be used effectively. In line with this it calls for wider input and communications between central and local government, so the imminent changes from comprehensive performance assessments (CPAs) to comprehensive area assessments (CAAs) are fully understood.

In October 2006, the Department for Communities and Local Government published a white paper which set out a new regime of CAAs for monitoring, supporting, assessment, and intervention. From April 2009 the CAA approach will provide:

  • A reduced total number of indicators from around 1,500 to just 200
  • More outcome based indicators that are meaningful to citizens holding their local service providers to account
  • Annual assessment of risks to outcomes or delivery
  • Annual ratings of 'use of resources'
  • Annual ratings of the progress made on delivering improvements
  • External inspections targeted primarily on the basis of the risk assessment

"Many authorities have their own local requirements that are very much priorities, but these priorities sometimes compromise published performance, for example central government indicators," said the NCC's managing director Stefan Foster.

"A wider dialogue and understanding between the two sides would be massively beneficial and private sector input could contribute significantly, particularly given their longer standing experience with performance management techniques and applications."

On the issue of the government indicators, Foster told GC News: "Local authorities need to understand much more about what central government and its representatives, the National Audit Office, want to do."

He said that while the reduction in the number of indicators could be seen as a good thing, it was unclear as to whether this represented a real reduction or simply consolidation under broader indicators.

The report is based on interviews with the Shared Learning Group – a collaboration between Microsoft and 11 local authorities aimed at improving services.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.