THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL
CABINET: 27TH JULY, 2015
REFERENCE FROM SCRUTINY COMMITTEE (HOUSING AND PUBLIC PROTECTION): 17TH JUNE, 2015
“115 TARGET SETTING 2015-16 (DVSH) –
Committee received a report which:
- Presented the proposed targets for improvement for 2015-16 for all performance indicators reported by Housing and Building Services
- Highlighted the proposed deletions and additions to the Housing and Building Services performance indicator dataset for 2015-6.
The Wales Audit Office’s Annual Improvement Report of the Council 2013-14 identified the need to make greater use of external benchmarking in relation to target setting and in the reporting of performance as a means of driving improvement to ensure achievement of the level of service expected by Members.
All measures were reviewed annually to ensure they reflected changes in national policy and remained responsive to local priorities. It also ensured that residents, Elected Members and senior officers could scrutinise key areas of Council performance throughout the year.
At CMT on 25th March 2015, a new approach to target setting was endorsed. This approach focused on adopting a more challenging approach to how the Council set targets by ensuring that there was an assessment of how the Council had performance. This involved evaluating how the Council had performed against target and making best use of external benchmarking data where available, whilst balancing this against how much of a priority the indicator was to the Council and whether there was capacity to improve performance.
Following the end of year reporting period, all Directorates were asked to undertake a review of performance against all indicators in order to complete a target setting template. All Directorates were asked to set appropriately challenging targets that both supported the principle of continuous improvement but also realistically reflected the current financial climate and the service’s capacity to improve performance.
Outlined at Appendix 2 to the report was a full suite of performance indicators that would continue to be collected and reported on during 2015-16. Against each indicator, a target had been set and a rationale had been provided to explain why the target had been set at that level.
For 2015-16, five Improvement Objectives had been identified by the Council and of these, four had performance indicators attached to them. This target setting exercise had enabled Directors to review their Improvement Objective targets and revise them where appropriate to reflect end of year performance.
In relation to the Outcome Agreement indicators, these targets had already been pre-agreed with the Welsh Government until 2016. Although in principle these targets had been pre-set, in instances where the Council’s end of year performance exceeded the target for 2014/15, Directorates had the opportunity to set more internally challenging targets in order to drive the upward trend in performance.
For the remaining local level indicators, targets should have been set based on the Council’s over-riding principle to secure continuous improvement. However, where it had been identified that budgetary pressures and / or service delivery pressures were likely to impact on the Council’s ability to continue to improve performance, this was clearly stated in the rationale section of Appendix 2.
During 2014-15, the Council reported on a total of 413 indicators. Following a review of performance for 2014-15, 357 indicators were being proposed to be collected and reported on during 2015-16, 342 of these being existing measures that would be carried forward from last year.
The proposed deletion of indicators for 2015-16 was detailed in Appendix 3 to the report.
For Housing and Building Services, this could be further broken down as follows:
There were 60 indicators and for 28 of these it was possible to set a target and direction of travel.
50% (14) of targets had been set to improve on the previous year’s performance result (2014-15), 39.3% (11) of targets had been set static and 10.7% (3) of targets had been set lower than 2014-15 performance.
Of these indicators, 4 targets had been set to achieve best possible performance during 2015-16.
In relation to national benchmarking data, 2 indicators had targets set that were either in line with or an improvement on top quartile performance for 2013-14 and 1 indicator had a target set to improve on the Welsh average for 2013-14.
For 1 Outcome Agreement indicator (percentage of housing stock where work that meets the WHQS had been completed), the performance during 2014-15 exceed the target for 2015-16. Although this target had been pre-agreed with the Welsh Government, the service intended to work toward a more internally challenging target to reflect this improved performance.
For 2015-16, 18 indicators had been proposed for deletion and 8 had been identified as new indicators.
Part way through 2014-15, the remit of Community Safety was transferred over to Housing and Building Services. Therefore, during 2015-16, all data reporting in relation to Community Safety would now be undertaken by Housing and Building Services via this Committee.
Committee noted that “voids and letting times” was proposed to be deleted. Members felt that this was key information which they should receive and requested that this information continue to be provided.
Having considered the contents of the report, it was
(1) T H A T Cabinet be requested to retain the information on “voids and letting times” within future reports.
(2) T H A T with the exception of that indicator identified above, the proposed list of deletions and additions to the Housing and Building Services performance indicator dataset for 2015-16 be endorsed.
Reasons for recommendations
(1) To ensure the Council consistently sets challenging yet realistic performance improvement targets for its priorities in line with the requirements under the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009.
(2) That the Council reports a relevant set of performance indicators against which it can demonstrate achievement of its priorities.”
Attached as Appendix – Report to Scrutiny Committee (Housing and Public Protection): 17th June, 2015