Peer challenge results

16 November 2016

Newark and Sherwood District Council has been commended following a review by a team from the Local Government Association.

The organisation is praised for its ‘strong leadership’, for being ‘forward-thinking and ambitious’ and having ‘a positive culture’ in its workforce.

The overall assessment states that the council is ‘well-placed’ for the future as it embraces new ways of working,  ahead of moving into new offices in Great North Road, Newark, next year.

The Local Government Association Corporate Peer Challenge Team spent three days at the council’s headquarters Kelham Hall in the summer to look at how it operates and the report findings will be presented to the council’s policy and finance committee on December 1.

The report states: “There is strong leadership of the council, with the leader and chief executive well regarded locally and regionally. The leader plays a prominent role in the Local Enterprise Partnership. The chief executive has enabled, and is continuing to drive, a positive culture in the workforce; staff like working for Newark and Sherwood Council and feel strongly empowered to explore different ways of working.

“The council is well regarded by external stakeholders, and is considered to be a good partner because it involves partners from different sectors in developing a shared ambition for the district. It has a reputation for being forward-looking and ambitious, making the most of opportunities that arise.”

It adds: “We think that the council is well-placed to continue to be an active partner in the future local government environment, due to its financial stability and collaborative arrangements, and record of exploring innovative approaches and seizing opportunities that arise.”

Council leader Councillor Roger Blaney said: “This is an extremely positive report and confirms that the council is working very hard for the diverse communities which it serves.”

Chief Executive Andrew Muter said: “This confirms not just how much the council has achieved  but also recognises how it continues to look toward bringing further benefits to the community.”

The report also makes a number of recommendations where the council should look to make improvements.

 Better communications and improved engagement with residents and customers are among the suggestions cited by the LGA  team. It also says that although the council has clear priorities, more could be done to clarify its vision.

The council is working to develop an action plan on how it intends to implement the recommendations and a follow-up visit is likely within the next two years.

 A full copy of the report is available to view: Peer review results 2016 (PDF File, 1,038kb)

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