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Budget Consultation 2018 - 2021

Further efficiencies in Council support and corporate services

There are a number of ways we are achieving further efficiencies throughout our corporate and support services.

main street, Barrhead

These services include Human Resources, ICT, Accountancy, Communications, Legal, Property and Technical Services (PATS) and Procurement. Through our continued focus on efficiency, we will be able to achieve considerable savings from our support services by working smarter.

In particular, ensuring that we continue to harness and further develop services using new technologies and digital solutions will be a core focus of this work.

As we modernise, streamline services and identify more and more efficient ways to run our services, we anticipate that the number of staff within our support and corporate service functions will reduce by around 39 FTE by 2021.

Across all our support services we anticipate that we will save around £4.89million over the next three years. 

This work is already underway and some of the key ways we will achieve these efficiencies include:

Re-negotiating contracts with suppliers

We are focused on getting best possible value for the public purse by vigorously negotiating contracts with suppliers and seeking out the best deals. We believe that we can save over £300,000 through more efficient procurement of ICT and other services and around a further £900,000 through improvements in our arrangements for borrowing.

Estimated saving

£1.369million

Further development of our online services

More and more of our customers want and expect to be able to access our services online 24/7. We have already developed a good range of online services, with some 20 per cent of customers already using these. We will continue to focus on improving the online experience of our customers, enhancing the range of ways that they can access our services. This will also free up our customer service teams to focus on those who require more detailed support and assistance. 

Estimated saving

£238,000

Review of internal systems and ways of working

We are always striving to identify new and improved ways of working. That means more of our staff working in an agile way where they work across sites without a fixed desk and use digitised processes that are less manually labour intensive. This kind of modernisation will allow us to make some significant savings in our Accountancy, Communications, HR, ICT and Revenues team resources. With a reduced resource within our Communications team there will no longer be the capacity to continue running the annual Armed Forces Day fun day event. The Armed Forces Day flag raising ceremony attended by veterans from across the area would be retained.

Estimated saving

£1.23million

Increasing income

There are a number of ways in which our support services can generate income for the Council to help off-set the amount of savings we need to make.

Within our support services some of the ways we plan to maximise income includes more efficient debt recovery, increasing the amount of money we charge to developers and other third party organisations for legal fees and improving returns on our investments.

Estimated saving

£410,000

Review of budgets

We have reviewed every budget line throughout our support service departments and looked at budgets that we hold as contingencies. Where budgets underspend thanks to better ways of working or changes in demand, we are reducing or removing these. We will also hold less in contingencies and may have to rely more on reserves for unexpected increases in demands.

Estimated saving

£1.315million

Review of Property and Technical Services

Context

Our in-house Property and Technical Services team (PATS) manage the Council's property assets. They oversee the delivery of our new build projects and major maintenance programmes, including the maintenance of the Council's property estate.

Proposal

To review how these services are currently delivered and identify ways for these services to be delivered more efficiently in future.

What will this mean

We will seek to improve our digital and other processes to maximise efficiencies. It is possible that there could be a reduction to the number of staff providing these services in future. We will explore different ways to provide these services. This could mean that services currently delivered in-house could be delivered in future by other contractors.

Estimated saving

£330,000

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