Leading independent management consultancy IMPOWER Consulting has been chosen as North Ayrshire Council’s strategic partner for its transformation programme.
This is a major coup for the company which is now firmly establishing itself in the Scottish market, following recent success with City of Edinburgh Council.
The partnership will see both organisations working together to realise a single vision for the future of the council, which will ultimately lead to more efficient and sustainable services council-wide.
IMPOWER successfully fended off competition from a number of larger firms and the council commented that their decision to hire IMPOWER was largely based on the company’s approach to work with council staff to build their capacity and skills, as opposed to bringing in a huge external team to deliver the entire project. North Ayrshire Council was also impressed with the company’s ‘Services First’ ethos, and its genuine passion and desire to help the council improve.
High quality references of past work across a diverse range of local government clients also proved integral to their decision.
The first phase of work started in earnest in October, and is examining alternative ways of delivering services and – through their change programme – providing support to services to co-ordinate how transformation will happen.
IMPOWER is working closely with North Ayrshire’s change programme team and service leads, to identify and implement a number of initiatives that will not only transform services, but also seek to reduce and remove a £35m+ funding gap over the next three years.
To date IMPOWER has helped the council to look at different ways of doing things, as well as helping them to structure the overall programme in a way that focuses on the core objectives and strips out the need to have lots of smaller projects running in tandem.
IMPOWER’s chief executive, Martin Cresswell said: “We are delighted to be working with North Ayrshire Council to address the severe financial challenge now facing local authorities. The council’s commitment to delivering sustainable change by reshaping services around citizens’ needs, rather than the current common approach of cutting jobs and services based on academic analysis, means we are helping them have a real chance of providing high quality services in the future.”
Elma Murray, chief executive of North Ayrshire Council said: “The council is facing unprecedented financial pressures over the next few years. We recognise that radical change will therefore be required in the way we deliver our services and we wanted to secure the support of a strategic partner to bring the experience and expertise of delivering change programmes with local authorities. IMPOWER will help the council deliver the changes required while transferring skills to council staff, ensuring that we build our knowledge and capability to continue to change and improve the council in the future. We look forward to working with IMPOWER to deliver that change.”