2014: The year of new partnerships
2014 will be the year where we redefine what local service provision means to us. As councils move away from providing non statutory services and we see an increased variety of private and 3rd sector partners based across the UK delivering our services, we need to consider what is the role of the local authority.
Whereas once councils provided a range of services targeted at their residents within specific geographical boundaries, we are now seeing an increase in our services being provided from service providers in completely different locations. To compound this, councils themselves are capitalising on national markets, selling a range of different services to each other across local authority boundaries ranging from services to schools to marketing and communications support. Central Government continues to push the “localism” agenda, but local authorities will struggle to balance the demands of providing bespoke services tailored to their residents’ local needs with the need to get value for money and generate income.
2014 brings the opportunity for local authorities to redefine how they want their services to be provided “locally” and what this looks like in practice for their customers.