Savings sought from Redesign
Redesign is about the Council being more open-minded to new ways of delivering services, more commercially-minded to raise income to support services and jobs across the region and being more community-minded, listening locally and supporting more community-run services.
The Highland Council is seeking to release over £2.2 million in savings this year through redesign projects. These projects challenge whether there is a different business model, whether the service can be provided at a more affordable level in-house, by others and whether there are commercial opportunities or scope for communities to be more involved. Where services are run directly by the Council they will be redesigned to streamline processes and improve efficiency. The Council has already reviewed a number of services including all waste services, street lighting, some services for children and music tuition. Our Lean reviews of processes have shown that it is possible to improve services for Highland residents and make savings at the same time.
Further redesign reviews are already underway. They include the provision of legal services and grey fleet. Grey fleet means the arrangements for staff using their own vehicles to do their jobs and the review is finding out if there are better ways of doing this, for example, the use of pool cars and car clubs. This week the Redesign Board of Members and Trade Union representatives considered the approach to reviewing the Council’s building trade services. As well as the in-house service of 150 maintenance staff, including around 6 apprentices, last year we procured around £22m of building trade services including specialist services from other suppliers. This review will examine whether there is a better and more affordable model.
Chair of the Redesign Board, Convener Bill Lobban said: “We have already had some very real successes with Redesign so far. The success of this Redesign process can be directly attributed to Staff, Trade Unions and Members working together to deliver better outcomes for the Highlands. We will continue to identify areas which could benefit from being reviewed and we will be tackling these in an ambitious and challenging programme over the next year.”
Council Leader Margaret Davidson added: “Redesign is working really well and it is a very positive way for members across the chamber to work together with staff to deliver positive outcomes. Redesign is a good way of doing business into the future and we will also involve communities in future reviews.
“£2.2 million is an ambitious target to achieve, but I am confident that Redesign is the right way to do this.”