Posted on March 30, 2017 by Bob Shambler
Mark Felt’s exposure of the Watergate scandal brought down President Nixon; Julie Bailey’s campaign led to the investigation into the failings of the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust; Sherron Watkins’ exposure of the Enron scandal led to wider questioning of US company accounting practices and contributed to new accounting and accountability laws. Whistleblowing plays a crucial role in transparency, provides a highly valuable early warning system for organisations and drives a wide range of improvements. Would you know how to whistleblow? Would you feel safe from reprisal? The NAO has put out a series of reports on whistleblowing, and I recently drew on these to share the UK’s experience of whistleblowing arrangements at a Mexican conference on international best practice. more… Whistleblowing good practice
Posted on March 6, 2017 by Amyas Morse
I was privileged to speak to The Strand Group at King’s College London in early February on some of the elements needed for government to successfully implement major change programmes in complex, interconnected systems. The examples on which I focused were local, adult social care and NHS services in light of devolution, fiscal restraint and Brexit. After my talk, I was asked many interesting questions, some of which I would like to explore in more detail in this post. [See here for the video and transcript.] more… A flexible, engaged approach to efficient public services
Posted on February 10, 2017 by Emma Willson
Cost savings failing to materialise. Customers hit with poor service and financial losses from public services. Contracts disputed and terminated. Contracts can go badly wrong before they even begin if the set up and management aren’t right. Since launching Commercial and contract management: insights and emerging best practice we’ve reported on three contracts that have enjoyed varying degrees of success. As part of our series to share insights into best practice contracting, in this blog-post we explore lessons from these three contracts. more… Setting up successful contracts
Tagged: Accountability, Contract insights series, Contract management, Cost reduction, Cross-government, Customer service, Good practice principles, Information management, Performance management, Risk management
Posted on January 27, 2017 by Tom Tyson
Have you been ‘nudged’ into a workplace pension? Feel up to speed with changes to the state pension? Confident you’ll have a comfortable retirement? Worried there’ll be more changes – to your pension schemes and/or pension age? Do you understand who does what in the world of pensions? With pension reforms shifting responsibility for retirement planning to individuals and away from the state, to provide clarity, we’ve just launched a Pensions Landscape site to explain who does what in this complex landscape and the key challenges facing the government. more… Navigating a changing pensions landscape
Posted on January 23, 2017 by Charles Nancarrow
Scams, unfair trading, e-crime, unsafe goods – these harmed consumers to the tune of £14.8 billion in 2014-15. And that’s just the estimate of the problems tackled by consumer protection bodies; you may not even be aware of times you’ve been a victim of unfair trading. With poor consumer awareness and threats to consumers becoming increasingly complex and wide-ranging we, the Regulation, Consumers and Competition team, recently published a report. We describe here the types of consumer detriment, who’s responsible for protecting consumers, and what all this means for consumers. more… Do you feel protected as a consumer?
Posted on January 12, 2017 by David Goldsworthy
After 22 years with the NAO, David Goldsworthy, Head of International Relations and Technical Co operation is retiring. David has led a team which has delivered around 100 projects in more than 50 countries over the last 17 years. He looks back over how the world of audit has changed and reveals some of his personal highlights.
more… Dedicated to strengthening international auditing
Posted on January 6, 2017 by Sarah Perryman
Management theory is full of good advice, but how should it be put into practice? How can we harness the lessons gleaned from across government and adapt them to the delivery of a specific service? I’ve applied the principles set out in our good practice guide, Managing business operations, to child protection services. Drawing on our recent report, I’ve looked at what’s happening in practice, where there’s good practice be shared and how the centre is taking a lead. Using our identified four characteristics of success, I’ve set out questions professionals should be asking themselves to help improve services. more… Putting children first: Making theory work in practice
Tagged: Accountability, Business operations, Children, Cross-government, Customer service, Good practice principles, Information management, Leadership, Local government, Police, Process management, Risk management, Young people
Posted on December 21, 2016 by Antonia Gracie
Helping Mozambique address its huge post-war challenges … the launch of a new book on the NAO’s 900 year history … a framework to help the UK government oversee the £734 billion of taxpayers’ money spent each year. The common thread is improved Parliamentary oversight and accountability. This aim is at the heart of the NAO’s role and therefore of the new book by former Assistant Auditor General, David Dewar; it was the subject of my presentation at the Houses of Parliament to a Mozambican delegation; and it has been a key theme of my work in our cross-government team this year. more… Ensuring Government delivers: an international and 900 year viewpoint
Posted on December 16, 2016 by Mathew Power
Care leavers happy with their accommodation, aware of their entitlements, feeling they have access to education or employment and that they’re listened to and helped to achieve their aims and aspirations. This is not just a vision of success, it’s the finding of Ofsted’s review of Trafford’s services. However, Trafford is one of only three local authorities out of 103 inspected and judged to be ‘outstanding’. Why? Often the answer can be found by consulting care leavers themselves. more… Care leavers: engaging for solutions
Posted on December 12, 2016 by Jeremy Lonsdale
The UK’s biggest ever aircraft carrier, the nuclear deterrent… behind the large and expensive defence programmes that we hear about are people. People who need suitable work environments and a home – and that means buildings. The built estate is a vital part of our defence capability. Yet the Ministry of Defence (MOD) faces a shortfall of at least £8.5 billion of funding over the next 30 years just to bring its buildings up to a good standard of condition. And that doesn’t include the homes for service families, many of which have been a cause of growing dissatisfaction. With housing crucial to morale and staff retention, there’s considerable interest in ensuring our service personnel are satisfied with their homes. So what is the current state of the MoD’s buildings and what are the lessons for other organisations managing large property estates? more… Our defence estate – right size, right condition, right price?