75% Of Council FDs Looking To Implement Shared Services Or Outsource
75% of Council financial heads are exploring options to merge services with other local authorities or outsource service delivery to external organisations, according to a survey of local governmnent Finance Directors conducted by Localis, the localism thinktank.
Among those who are looking to outsource some of their services, 71% prefer the private sector, while 69% and 63% prefer voluntary and community organisations respectively.
50% of councils say the sheer extent of the spending cuts came as a shock, while a vast majority (80%) believe that the spending cuts have been too deep. According to the report, one in three councils now believe that there will be a 20% in their workforce. Before the CSR, most councils believed that not rehiring in positions would help them achieve their reduction of staff numbers, however since the CSR, almost 75% believe that might have to implement forced redundancy.
Adult social care services would be the biggest victim of spending cuts, the respondents suggested despite the 2 Billion additional spending by the Central Government.
Most councils are thinking of innovative solutions to meet the funding crisis head on, and the central government must provide adequate powers to local councils to pursue new service delivery models, the report has suggested.
“Councils must think radically about how they support and empower their residents and introduce new service delivery models, with further support from Government over initiatives such as community budgets,? Alex Thomson Chief Executive of Localis said.
Councils must follow up on their enthusiasm towards the ideas of increased outsourcing and sharing services by accurately assessing the needs of the local population and designing strategic partnerships to serve these needs.