Council Efficiency Targets

Over the past two years, The Highland Council has achieved £10.2 million of cash savings through delivering services in a more efficient way.  A report, being presented to the full Council on Thursday setting out the Council’s Annual Efficiency Statement for 2006/7, says the level of actual and planned efficiency savings is almost three times greater than the annual target set by the Scottish Executive.  A total of £6.52 million of cash efficiency savings was delivered in 2006-7, adding to the £3.68 million estimated in 2005-6.

Savings are being delivered through new ways of purchasing goods and services; process improvements; restructuring of Services; asset management and sharing service delivery with neighbouring councils.

The Council has established a Business Improvement Team to identify and deliver projects and initiatives which improve business processes, increase business capability and generate efficiency savings.

A Corporate Procurement Unit has been set up to ensure the Council is more efficient in the way it purchases goods and services, valued at £180 million annually.

New technology is helping improve levels of customer satisfaction, via the customer relationship management  system, which simplifies processes in dealing with customers and reduces duplication of work.

A review of management structures has seen the reduction of Services from nine to seven, with the merger of Corporate Services and the Chief Executive’s Office and Housing with Property and Architectural Services as well as the reduction of operational management areas from eight to three.

Savings, too, are being made on energy costs, with a target saving of 15% expected by 2010.

Arthur McCourt, Chief Executive, said: “Due to the challenging financial environment, the Council needs to deliver an increasing programme of efficiency savings.  With a wide programme of projects and activities already in operation, we are well placed to deliver efficiency gains in future years.”

The Annual Efficiency Statement is a new reporting mechanism agreed by all of Scotland’s 32 councils to demonstrate efficiency improvement in local government.


26 Jun 2007