What you told us

We are committed to delivering high quality services to the public and being accountable for our performance. One way that this is achieved is through an annual public performance survey. 

Citizens' Panel feedback

The survey is carried out in May and June each year and is now sent to our Citizens' Panel. The Panel consists of over 2,600 people and is designed to be representative of the adult population. The Panel enables us to consult communities about our performance. 


We conduct an annual performance and attitudes survey of our citizens. The intention of this is to listen to, and take account of the views of our communities. We use this feedback to improve performance.

The survey gathers information on:

  • The Council qualities that people value
  • Community Life which includes attitudes to, for example, community safety
  • Satisfaction with council services
  • Experiences using our online and customer services
  • Involved communities
  • and much more
In 2019, 1,137 people responded to our survey and a summary of some of the key results is below.

Important qualities for the council

When asked for views on which of 15 qualities are the most important for the council to display, the top five in 2019 were:

  1. Maintains good quality local services
  2. Provides value for money
  3. Listens to local people
  4. Cares for the environment
  5. Treats all residents fairly

Community life

In 2019, 94.4 per cent of respondents rated their neighbourhood or community as a very or fairly safe place to live.  There has been an increase to 43.4 per cent (from 42.3 per cent in 2018) for those who are "very" or "slightly" worried about being a victim of crime (in general). 

For the questions about the Gaelic language, 73 per cent of respondents said we have strengthened the profile of the Gaelic language.

Satisfaction with council services

63 per cent of respondents were satisfied overall with Council Services and this score is the same as last year. Participants were also asked if they were more or less satisfied with our services than they were last year. 62.5 per cent of participants stated that their level of satisfaction had increased or remained about the same.

Respondents were also asked which services they considered to be the most important.

The top ten services in terms of the public's perception are:

  1. Roads repairs and potholes - 71 per cent
  2. Winter road maintenance - 48 per cent
  3. Refuse/bin collection- 29 per cent
  4. Primary education- 27 per cent
  5. Recycling facilities  - 25 per cent
  6. Public parks and other open spaces- 23 per cent
  7. Secondary education - 20 per cent
  8. Public toilets - 19 per cent
  9. Pavement maintenance - 18 per cent
  10. Street cleaning - 16 per cent

Experiences using our online and customer services

Citizens Panel members who had made contact with us during the 12 month period preceding the 2019 survey were asked to rate the service they had received on a number of aspects including helpfulness of staff, waiting times, and satisfaction with service given.

For respondents who had made a complaint to us in the last 12 months, 31 per cent were "very" or "fairly" satisfied with how they were handled, an increase from 23 per cent for 2018.

Involved communities

When asked, people in Highland tend to classify their communities as geographically, such as "my village" (42 per cent), "my street/ immediate neighbourhood" (42 per cent), "Highland" (40 per cent), or "My town" (36 per cent).

The levels of volunteering continue to remain high, with 42 per cent volunteering through an organised group or club.

Over half (58 per cent) of the people completing the survey stated that they want to be "fairly" or "very" involved in decision making in their local area. There was also an appetite to be involved in particpatory budgeting:

  • 66 per cent stating they would like to be involved by putting forward ideas for new projects, and
  • 80 per cent by choosing the projects they like the most.

Of those questioned, 72 per cent were either "very" or "fairly" interested in taking part in community discussions about how local services are provided and making choices within our budget limits.

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