Business improvement service ContrOCC helps over 70 local authorities use their social care finance data to inform decision-making. OCC also offers tailored support to help councils meet their business improvement goals.

Many business improvements depend on quality business intelligence. The high-level business intelligence practice model below shows how actions in one area can generate improvements in the way an organisation collects and uses its data.

An OCC business improvement project acts on this cycle at key points, challenging assumptions, identifying gaps, improving the authority’s knowledge about its data and allowing managers to make decisions with confidence.

One example is a project to compare proposed changes to a council’s charging policy.

Modelling changes in charging policy

We were contacted by a local authority that was considering several possible changes to its charging policy, including changes to maximum charge and/or allowable disregard. The authority wanted to see the effects on both charge-paying clients and revenue.

OCC modelled each option and combination of options using the authority’s anonymised data to provide truly comparable results for each scenario. The authority could see clearly the impact of each scenario on clients and the authority, allowing elected members to make their decision based on evidence.

To take one example, the results showed that removing the maximum charge would increase revenue by 13%, or approximately £100,000 per year.

Other business improvement projects

Scenario modelling is just one way that OCC can help local authorities meet their business improvement goals. Other ways include:

  • reporting: using gap analysis and stakeholder workshops, a review of the authority’s social care finance reporting arrangements identifies reporting priorities, improves processes and proposes solutions for remaining gaps
  • issue review: a two-phase, in-depth review of a specific issue relating to social care finance data, including a feasibility study to identify requirements, resources and tools, followed by a detailed investigation and analysis
  • data quality: identifies issues with off-system data sources and duplicate or incorrectly keyed records, and appraises recording, training and compliance arrangements, to improve the quality of data recorded and the ability to get meaningful intelligence
  • income maximisation: broader than a charging policy review, this examines processes around requesting and carrying out financial assessments to find improvements in the timeliness of completing assessments, notifying clients of charges and recovering costs
  • performance management: assesses what needs to be monitored to meet strategic and operational objectives, before developing ad hoc reports and provider monitoring workbooks to produce KPIs or a customised balanced scorecard.

We would be happy to discuss these or other ways in which we can help your local authority. If you would like more information about OCC and business improvement, please contact us.