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West Lancashire District Council - awards for 'organisational re-engineering'

West Lancashire District Council's success in 'organisational re-engineering' to improve services for customers has been recognised with special awards and certificates.

The Council has received the Northgate Award for Re-engineering Excellence for its work in making changes in the Council Tax section, to provide a better service for local people while making savings which will be ploughed back into front line services at the same time.

In addition, three members of staff have received certificates for proficiency in organisational re-engineering. Shaun Walsh, Customer Services Manager, and Lynne Abbott, Organisational Re-engineering Manager have received Advanced Practitioner awards, and Julie Ashcroft Senior Auditor received Accredited Practitioner status.

The awards were made by Northgate Information Solutions, the Council's private-sector partners. Northgate has worked with West Lancs on a range of initiatives to improve customer services including the Customer Contact Centre and Customer Service Points, and the re-engineering of the Council Tax service.

Cllr Geoff Roberts, Leader of the Council, said:

"The Council is committed to ensuring that our customers get a first-class service, and that is why we are looking closely at what we do, to ensure we provide higher quality services for customers through a range of access channels. People can choose to click, call or come in for services - through our website, our Contact Centre, and our Customer Service Points in Skelmersdale and Ormskirk."

Cllr Adrian Owens, portfolio holder for finance, said:

"Providing value for money for local people is also a top priority. Through our corporate Organisational Re-engineering programme, we are changing the way we work to ensure we become more efficient while providing higher quality services at the same time. I am delighted that our success, and the commitment of staff, have been recognised in this way."

Presenting the awards, Mr Dave Meaden, Managing Director of Public Services at Northgate, said:

"West Lancs District Council is now recognised nationally as one of the leaders in this field and is achieving great success. The Council is committed 100 per cent to improving its services, the staff are dedicated and enthusiastic, and Northgate is proud to work with them. We look forward to further successes which will bring even greater benefits to local people."

The success of the re-engineering project, combined with the outstanding performance of the Customer Contact Centre, has gained national recognition, and has helped the Council win awards for both quality and performance. The team continues to host numerous visits from other local authorities and private sector organisations alike who are keen to learn from best practice.

The Council was also rated as 'excellent' recently by Central Government following an in-depth assessment by the Audit Commission specifically within the area of Customer Access and Focus - this being the highest score possible.

For further information:

West Lancashire District Council

Contact the PR Office on 01695 585011 or phone -
Edwina Leigh, Public Relations & Consultation Manager
West Lancashire District Council
Tel: 01695 577177 ext 5433

Northgate Information Solutions

Kathy Sutton, Fellows’ Associates 020 7092 1801 / 07966 890401
Naomi Stevenson, Fellows’ Associates 020 7092 1803 / 07966 890403