Archives for December 1st, 2003

NEW STEPS TO SHARE COUNCILS’ KNOWLEDGE

Headlines, PublicNet: 1 December, 2003

An initiative from the Improvement and Development Agency has been created to improve the sharing of local councils’ knowledge. It comes as a result of the Comprehensive Performance Assessment process, which showed that individual councils have specific areas of excellence, irrespective of their overall rating.Now IDeA is working with pilot authorities on a new scheme – the Accelerated Improvement Consortia – to capture this knowledge, to be shared initially within a small learning network and then more widely with local authorities nationally.

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REPORTS FOCUS ON POLICIES FOR OLDER PEOPLE

Headlines, PublicNet: 1 December, 2003

The results of Britain’s biggest ever study of quality of life in old age show older people are happier, healthier, and more resourceful than is generally thought but that the Government needs to do more to ensure that the increasing number of older people have a better life. The message comes from the four-year ‘Growing Older Programme’ funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.A second report published today also focuses on older people. It is from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and insists that policy measures to enable more people to continue working past retirement age do not mean forcing everyone to ‘work until they drop’.

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PAY AND WORKFORCE STRATEGY FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Abstracts, PublicNet: 1 December, 2003

This document sets out a comprehensive approach to help ensure that local government has the right numbers of people in the right places with the right skills to deliver improved services, better productivity and greater customer focus in front line services. It has been developed by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Employers’ Organisation, with input from other government departments and relevant agencies and professional organizations.The strategy describes priority areas that are critical to the improvement of local authorities and to improving the delivery of customer focused public services. Developing leadership capacity among both officers and members, including attracting effective leaders into local government from outside the sector is of prime importance. This is closely followed by developing the skills and capacity of the workforce across the corporate centre of authorities, specific services, management and the frontline workforce. It will also be crucial to develop the organisation in order to achieve excellence in people and performance management, partnership working and the delivery of customer focused services. It will be important to ensure that authorities recruit, train and retain the staff they need and to address diversity and equality issues.This involves having pay and reward structures that attract, retain and develop a skilled and flexible workforce while achieving value for money in service delivery.

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