We continuously strive to improve value for money in all the services we provide to you.
To improve value for money in each service we regularly look at:
- Economy – the cost of providing a service
- Efficiency - how much we get out for what we put in
- Effectiveness – the impact of that service, whether or not it meets the desired outcomes.
We achieve value for money or cost effectiveness when we achieve relatively low costs, get a lot out of a service and it meets your needs.
How do we make our services cost effective?
We use the Mayor’s Framework for Cost Effectiveness to try to ensure that we continuously improve value for money. This has been very important for some years now as we have worked to reprioritise the services we provide so that they meet the needs of the people of Newham.
It has become even more important now that funding is being significantly cut across local government as part of the Government’s financial strategy to achieve a balanced budget in future years.
The Mayor’s Framework brings together our policies, plans and day-to-day operations so that they all work towards improving value for money. We monitor the value for money that our services and operations are achieving throughout the year and report the results to councillors and the Mayor.
Policies and strategies
We have a three-year rolling budget strategy to deliver the legally required services and the areas of work we are prioritising while aiming to keep Council Tax increases to a minimum. We have not increased Council Tax for seven years (from 1/4/15) and we continue to have the lowest Council Tax in outer London.
Service and operational levels
Taking the budget strategy, we plan how we will use the resources we have each year to meet our legal duties and the areas of work we are prioritising. This work results in the production of annual plans for each directorate of the council. A large part of this work is spent identifying how we can save money while providing the same or better levels of service.
We compare how we are operating with other local authorities (to identify and learn from best practice) and we assess different ways of delivering services to ensure that we are providing value for money. We also try to reduce costs by procuring goods and services more cheaply, for example via online auctions.
Reporting and monitoring
We include value for money/savings monitoring and performance monitoring in a series of monthly and annual reports to ensure that we are constantly reviewing the cost effectiveness of what we do and how we do it.