Report 37: Personalisation, productivity and efficiency

Business processes

'Done thoroughly and systematically, self-directed support is less wasteful than traditional targets money more effectively and directly to citizens and communities where it can have most effect.' (3)

A local authority survey of the cost-efficient implementation of direct payments by the Audit Commission in 2006 concluded that where direct payments are properly introduced, they can produce higher-quality and more efficient services. However, when choice is not implemented efficiently, this adds to costs and reduces value for money.

This finding is reflected in emerging evidence on the transformation of business processes to implement self-directed support and personal budgets. However, much of the reform work has been supported by the Social Care Transformation Grant, for which there were no audit requirements. An ADASS and LGA survey of local authorities showed that in the first year the Grant was spent on changes to care management, internal process development and dedicated project teams (4).

The Care Services Efficiency Delivery (CSED) programme identified process improvement as vital for efficiency, service quality and staff satisfaction (5).

Evidence suggests that local authority business processes are becoming more efficient in the following areas:

It seems that the personalisation agenda is stimulating review and change in business processes. This appears to have reliable potential to generate efficiency savings and improve productivity.


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