East Cambridgeshire District Council has completed an extensive restructure to focus on delivering the services which residents need and supporting economic growth.
Throughout 2014, the authority has been reorganising its staff, committees and structures to ensure despite cuts to Local Government budgets, the District Council is in shape financially and operationally to function in the years ahead.
The ‘root and branch’ investigation into all the services and spending at the Council began late last year as the organisation sought to balance its budget, deliver the services residents require and support growth through the Corporate Priorities.
This review assessed how resources were employed and researched opportunities to work in partnership with neighbouring authorities.
The outcome has been extensive with in year savings of nearly £1/2 million and a complete restructure of the management team to streamline the decision making process, allowing for those delivering services to have greater ownership of decisions.
The committees have also been realigned and service member champions have been introduced to create a better reporting structure and make certain there is no democratic deficit as a result of the changes.
Councillor James Palmer, Leader of East Cambridgeshire District Council, said: “The last year has been a very tough one for the Council as we have looked to balance the needs of our residents with extreme financial pressures. We took the bold decision to challenge officers to remodel how the organisation worked to have a more commercial, can do attitude. No one could say this process has been easy and some very tough decisions have had to be made. However, a huge amount of progress has been made in recent months as we have implemented the new structures and ways of working.
“The benefits of this process have been numerous. In the short term, we have saved nearly £1/2million in efficiency and staff savings but the bigger picture is more significant. We have a clearer, more focused Council which is able to act quickly and decisively to help and support our residents. We have empowered the officers who deliver work on the ground to bring a commercial perspective to the services they provide and have created the environment to ensure Councillors of all parties are more included in the decision making process of the authority. We know there will be plenty of challenges ahead but with a renewed focus, we believe the future is more secure for the authority which will see real benefits for our residents and local businesses.”