Agenda Item No 9


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources): 23 June 2015


Report of the Managing Director


Wales Audit Office Report: Review of the Council's strategic approach to re-shaping services


Purpose of the Report

1.         To advise Members of the results of the review of the Council's approach to reshaping services undertaken by the Wales Audit Office (WAO) in 2015.


1.         That Members note the contents of the report.

Reason for the Recommendation

1.         To ensure the WAO's proposals for improvement outlined in the report are addressed as part of the Reshaping Services change programme.


2.         The Auditor General Wales is required to carry out an audit which discharges its statutory duties and fulfils its obligations under the Public Audit (Wales) Act 2004, the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009, the Local Government Act 1999 and the Code of Audit Practice. As part of this audit bespoke pieces of work are undertaken as part of an agreed annual Regulatory work programme aimed at enabling the Council to make improvements in economy, efficiency and effectiveness or financial or other management practices.  

3.         The review of the Council's approach to reshaping services forms part of the Vale's Regulatory work programme for 2014/15.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.         A copy of the report is attached at Appendix 1 and details the review findings and proposals for improvement.

5.         The WAO concluded that, ' the Council's Reshaping Services Strategy conforms to good practice and demonstrates that it is following the right processes to achieve transformation.'

6.         The report makes five  proposals for improvement:

  • P1: The Council should continue to gather and learn from experience of other authorities.
  • P2: The Council should ensure that staff resource is adequately assessed and relevant skills in place before selecting any alternative model.
  • P3: The Council should consider developing its criteria for selecting alternative models of service delivery to ensure that models are selected according to corporate objectives, which will assist in helping the Council defining an agreed vision for the future.
  • P4: The Council should consider the use of best practice frameworks for business case reviews and partnership working to add strength to its Reshaping Services Strategy as it moves to the next stage of transformation.
  • P5: The Council should consider referring to BS11000 to strengthen its ability to enter into and ensure the management and governance of all its partnerships are robust.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

7.         Proposals for improvement arising out of the review will be addressed as part of the change programme. The latest financial projections estimate that the Council will need to find savings of over £7 million in 2015/16 and approximately £24.6million over the next three years. Of these figures, savings have already been identified totalling £18million. A further sum of £6.6 million must be found to balance the revenue budget for the period to 2017/18. The Reshaping Services change programme aims to help address this shortfall.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

8.         None directly from this report. Although the Council's Sustainable Development checklist will completed at all stages in the proposed change programme.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

9.         The Council has a duty to improve under the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009 and the Local Government Act 1999.

Crime and Disorder Implications

10.      None directly from this report, although crime and disorder implications will be considered as part of each individual service review conducted as part of the programme.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

11.      None directly from this report although an Equalities Impact Assessment (EIA) has been undertaken for the whole of the Reshaping Services Strategy. Individual scoping for equalities impact will be completed by relevant managers for each specific service proposal as a minimum ensuring due regard is paid to both equality impact and the Public Sector Equality Duty Wales. Where required a full impact assessment will be undertaken detailing options to mitigate the impact upon protected characteristics. 

Corporate/Service Objectives

12.      The Council's Corporate Plan for 2013-17 provides the overall set of objectives within which the change programme will happen.

Policy Framework and Budget

13.      This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

14.      Progress against the Reshaping Services change programme will be reported to elected Members via Scrutiny Committees.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

15.      Corporate Resources is the lead Committee for the Reshaping Services change programme.

Background Papers

Appendix 1- Review of the Council's strategic approach to re-shaping services.


Contact Officer

Huw Isaac, Head of Performance & Development Manager


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team


Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas, Managing Director