Performance improvement in local government - learning the lessons of performance improvement: a good practice briefing

The Local Government Act (NI) 2014 (the Act) places a statutory responsibility on councils to make arrangements for and report on continuous improvement in their functions or services.  The Act also places a statutory responsibility on the Local Government Auditor to conduct an ‘improvement audit and assessment’ each year and report the findings.

The year 2017-18 was the final one of a three-year phased implementation of the performance improvement framework at all eleven councils. All councils met their key performance improvement responsibilities and all received the same overall audit and assessment, although councils are at different stages of development. This briefing summarises some of the key learning from audit and assessment work about the councils’ implementation of performance improvement. It identifies some key aspects of improving performance, illustrated by examples drawn from councils’ experience.