Archives for May 14th, 2003

DEADLINE NEARS FOR REFERENDUM CONSULTATIONS

Headlines, PublicNet: 14 May, 2003

There are only two days left for comments to be made on the idea of holding referendums in England to decide if there should be regional assemblies. The government’s consultation exercise began in December and ministers have asked for responses by Friday.So far more than six thousand individuals and organisations have made representations about the proposals, reflecting the wider opinions of people in their regions. The level of perceived interest in a referendum will be the main factor taken into consideration by the Secretary of State in deciding which region or regions will hold the votes first.

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EXCELLENT COUNCILS JOIN MINISTERS IN SEARCH FOR SERVICE INNOVATIONS

Headlines, PublicNet: 14 May, 2003

A special new forum, bringing together ministers and local council leaders, is being set up to find, test and implement new ways of improving public services. The first meeting of the Innovations Forum will take place next week under the joint chairmanship of the Local Government Minister and Lord Peter Smith, the leader of Wigan Council.The new body will be made up of ministers, civil servants and the leaders and chief executives of the current 22 upper tier councils graded as excellent by the Comprehensive Performance Assessment. It aims to discover, trial and implement new ways for central and local government to work towards improving people’s quality of life, providing better services, co-ordinating services at the local level, delivering both national and local priorities and enhancing the role of local authorities.

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LEARNING NEEDS ANALYSIS AND EVALUATION

Abstracts, PublicNet: 14 May, 2003

By Frances & Roland BeeEmployers are warned not to waste their valuable learning resources. A training course is often a knee-jerk reaction to a problem at work and there may be other more effective and cheaper solutions. Employers are advised that they may be wasting valuable resources on sending staff on training courses that they don’t need. The authors emphasise the need to look closely at what the organization needs and identify the real issues. It may turn out not to be a performance problem with employees at all – but perhaps to do with processes and procedures or a problem with IT. Even when it is an issue of employee performance they recommend looking at other interventions first. These could include: improved methods of working – sometimes better documentation of work processes, even a simple check-list, may do the trick. Better communication and redesigning the job are other options. The authors advocate a systematic process to identify and analyse the learning that is really needed in an organisation to ensure that targets are met.

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