- Improved services
- Significant financial saving – in the first 18-months saved over £100,000 net of investment
- Increased capacity to drive service income including a 35% revenue growth (>£300k) from garden waste over 3 years
- Integration to existing legacy systems
- Move from paper-based processes
- Automated communications
Improved services and financial savings
Tewkesbury Borough Council in Gloucestershire is using its digital transformation program to improve services for its customers, deliver environmental improvements and make significant financial savings.
Tewkesbury Borough Council’s in-house transformation team is redesigning services as it changes over to its new Liberty Create digital platform – a move which will see benefits such as better integration into existing legacy systems, automated communications and more manageable data to improve future services.
As a fully remote team they’ve simplified systems and reduced officer admin time, resulting in quicker customer response times. With this comes significantly improved council finances – their actions in the first 18-months saved over £100,000 net of investment. They are also increasing the council’s capacity to drive service income including a 35% revenue growth (>£300k) from garden waste over 3 years.
We were recently joined by Amy Adams, Programme Officer, Joe Cole, Digital Developer, and Claire Evans, Corporate Services Manager, to discuss their move to a low-code strategy. Tewkewsbury is the fastest growing district outside of London. As such, their demand is rapidly increasing, so they have turned to digital to help. In this short video, they discuss their move to a low-code strategy. Looking at the drivers, why they chose low-code and how they set up their transformation team.
Hear for yourself
Redesign waste and recycling services
The first services to move over to the new platform, Liberty Create, are its redesigned waste and recycling services – missed bins and assisted collections – and an entirely new online bulky waste system.
When it comes to bins, the council is going a step above the normal online process, and introducing improvements such as up-front information when customers go to report missed bins. This means if there has been a road closure, or if the recycling bin was contaminated, the system will already have this information and will provide it to the customer, reducing the number of missed bins reported. As well as helping to create more accurate data, it also provides a much slicker and useful service for residents.
The council’s online bulky waste service was previously paper-based, which resulted in significant time delays for customer updates, particularly if collections were missed or any issues arose.
The use of live data will also allow the council to quickly identify any bottlenecks and will give the teams the flexibility to make changes – including how the collections are mapped across the borough, and shaping these to reflect demand.
Crews on the bulky waste service will use an iPad to update collections as they go. This frees up the team from paper and clipboards. Plus, colleagues back at the base are freed up to do more valuable work, instead of rekeying data.
We’re really excited to be going live with the first of our online services using Liberty Create. We’ve utilised Liberty Create’s bulky waste accelerator, which saved us a huge amount of time. Technically, we’ve been focused on making sure our online waste and recycling services are as useful to the customer as possible – we want to save them time and provide them with as much information upfront as we can. Not only are we helping to create savings for the council, but we’re also simplifying back-office processes too.
The future’s digital
As part of its move to Liberty Create, the council is also launching a new online portal which will be home to all of its online services. It will be an intuitive area where customers can either choose to sign up to an account or use the services without one.
Over the next few months, the council will also be launching all of its reporting services (such as fly tipping and antisocial behaviour) as well as complaints and FOIs.
Once those services are live, the council will be introducing a new council tax paperless billing service – reducing a significant amount of paper and process. And work is already starting to look at what other services might fit into a wider ‘online council tax hub’, where residents can log in to deal with direct debits, changes in circumstances and more.
The council’s transformation team is also looking at its priorities for the next 12 months. This includes using the digital platform to improve its licensing, planning, cemetery, mapping and member services.
Our waste and recycling services are high profile – we offer really good services to our residents and now we’re going to be able to offer a fantastic online experience to go alongside them. We’re a council which is really committed to making our residents’ lives easier. The work of the transformation team is doing this, as well as helping us to reduce our carbon footprint and deliver on financial savings.
The move to a low-code strategy has a profound positive impact
The senior executive and members at this small council (300th of 354) believe that this Business Transformation Team has had a profoundly positive impact on service management and delivery. At a Local Government Association meeting the team was referred to as ‘flying the digital flag for district councils’. In March 2022, they were awarded a Bronze award for the Best Transformation Team at the iESE Public Sector Transformation Awards 2022.
In recognition of their contribution to digital transformation in the public sector, Tewkesbury Borough Council was awarded Bronze for the Best Transformation Team at The iESE Public Sector Transformation Awards 2022.