England & Wales

Need to Know Series: Planning for the longer term – strategies for sustaining councils beyond frontloaded cuts


Local government has had to respond rapidly to a harsh financial settlement and front-loaded cuts in budgets. Now that new budgets are in place, what are the strategies that councils can use to reduce costs while maintaining service levels and protecting the core of their organisations and their reputations.

This seminar offers delegates:

  • The four key principles of successful service redesign.
  • Case studies demonstrating the benefits of adopting systems thinking and business process improvement approaches to build organisational capacity.
  • Understanding of the issues around ‘managing failure’.
  • How to improve services through taking into account the views of service users.
  • Understanding of budget and demand planning through activity based costing and process mapping.
  • The main factors to improve a council’s reputation.
  • The six proven key success factors which affect the delivery of transformation.

This workshop uses tools and techniques developed as part of the National Process Improvement Project (NPIP) to offer practical guidance on how to make savings while maintaining or improving corporate and frontline services. All of the examples used are based on real savings made by real councils using standard practices. Anyone involved in transforming services or responsible for having to achieve budget savings, should not miss the opportunity to discover what has been proven in practice. There will be plenty of opportunity for participants to contribute ideas and opinions and to share their experiences.


10:30  Registration

11:00  Welcome and introduction

11:10  Session one: overview – An introduction to service transformation and its relevance to delivering efficiencies and transforming services

11:45  Session two: best practice – Case studies on the practical steps councils have taken in reducing cost and improving service delivery

12:30  Session three: the ingredients for success – Which factors affect success and how you can influence them

13:00  Lunch

13:45  Session four: applying the learning (workshop) – Ideas to take back to your local authority to build capacity and improve local services

14:45  Feedback and final comments

15:00  Close

(This programme is correct at time of publication, but programme content may be altered without notice to reflect speaker changes which are beyond our control.)


The seminar will be led and facilitated by Colin Whitehouse, former Senior Advisor to Communities and Local Government and an LGiU associate.

Who should attend?
  • Elected members, particularly portfolio holders with responsibility for resources
  • Chairs and members of audit and scrutiny committees
  • Officers with responsibility for delivering efficiencies and service transformation
  • Public sector trades unions