- Performance at a glance
- How we perform
- Self assessment and evaluation
- What others say about us
Welcome to the public performance pages for Aberdeenshire Council.
Aberdeenshire Performs is the council's performance improvement framework and encompasses all of our key strategies and plans. The Council Plan and strategic priorities help to set out the direction of the council. Services also develop three year Service Plans which identify key priorities for service delivery, as well as supporting the core outcomes of the Council Plan. A range of performance indicators are identified within service plans and are reported on a quarterly basis to Policy and Area Committees.
Within these pages you will be able to access a range of data evidencing our performance against core outcomes and priorities. You can also find out how we are viewed by our residents and external scrutiny bodies, and how we assess our own performance.
For a broad introduction to performance and how we manage it, please consult the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) section.
Our strategic assessment (pdf 1.79MB) is a high level, succinct statistical report summarising a select number of Aberdeenshire-specific themes. It draws on various national and local data sources.
The council plan sets out where we want to be as an organisation and how we will get there. The Plan identifies our vision, core outcomes and key priorities. To support this, each service develops their own Service Plan each year, identifying key measures of performance that will help them to evidence how they meet their objectives.
The performance indicators in these plans are also used to evidence how the council is meeting the core outcomes identified in the Council Plan.
View the performance scorecard for each outcome.
More detailed and historic reports can be found in the next section 'How We Perform'.
To see when forthcoming reports become publicly available, consult the Calendar of Reports section.
Aberdeenshire Council collects information on its performance for two reasons:
- So we know how we are doing and can make improvements;
- To keep ourselves accountable to the people of Aberdeenshire and others with an interest in the council.
We want to ensure our residents, service users and partners can access information that is relevant to them quickly and easily. We publish a range of performance data during each year. Comprehensive details of our regular publications can be found in our performance Reports Calendar.
In March 2013 Aberdeenshire Council adopted the Council Plan 2013-2017 which sets out the core objectives for the council and the priority outcomes to be delivered during the life of the plan. Each year the council will publish an Annual Report providing a review of progress delivering the priority outcomes and overall performance improvement including performance based on statutory indicators. The review of progress also reflects the outcomes of external scrutiny, self-evaluation and customer feedback.
Previous Public Performance Reports and Statutory Performance Reports
The Annual Report (above) is a new approach and introduced to report performance for 2013/14. In previous years the council produced separate 'at-a-glance' public performance reports, as well as a report on the Statutory Performance Indicators required by Audit Scotland.
Council services regularly monitor their performance against a set of key performance measures. Services report by exception to Policy & Area Committees. Exception reporting means that only measures which are performing below target, or well in excess of targets, are considered at committee. To ensure full scrutiny, a comprehensive report for all indicators is also produced and published on our website. Twice a year services also provide an update on key projects and actions that are underway.
Note: Following recent restructuring of council services, some report titles may vary from the service name.
Education and Children's Services
As a council we must understand our strengths and where we have areas for improvement. We use the ?How Good Is Our Council framework as our approach to self-assessment and evaluation. The first council-wide evaluation was presented to Aberdeenshire Council in 2012. Further focused evaluations followed in 2013 and 2014.
Did you find what you were looking for? Should you need older copies of these reports or if you have any queries, please contact the Performance team.
To support the council?s approach to continuous improvement it is important that we have a full picture of what we do well and where we could do things better. As well as reporting on our own performance we also collect information and feedback from a range of external sources. This allows us to see how others see us performing and can highlight areas where we might need to focus our attention on.
Feedback from Customers
View the reputation trackers.
The reporting of complaints data is monitored by Audit Scotland in conjunction with the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) and in line with the principles of Best Value arrangements.
Sometimes the council is unable to resolve a complaint to the satisfaction of the customer. When this happens, the customer can refer matters to the SPSO for further investigation. Investigation reports and decision letters referring to Aberdeenshire Council can be viewed on the SPSO website. Select 'Our Findings' from the menu and search investigation reports or decision letters for 'Aberdeenshire Council.'
External Scrutiny Reports
Annual Audit Report
Audit Scotland or an appointed auditor scrutinise the council's Statement of Accounts every year. Consideration is also given to Governance and Accountability and Best Value, Use of Resources and Performance.
Local Scrutiny Plan
The Local Scrutiny Plan (LSP) is an annual plan that sets out the planned scrutiny activity for the council based on a shared risk assessment undertaken by a local area network (LAN) made up of representatives of all the main local government audit and inspection agencies. This latest update is the result of a shared risk assessment which drew evidence from a range of sources, including annual reports from the council's external auditors, performance and self-evaluation data and inspection reports. The latest review of council services in Aberdeenshire reveals a positive picture - with no scrutiny risks identified - however there are some areas that will be the focus of on-going oversight by scrutiny partners. In addition there is planned non risk based scrutiny including a joint inspection of services for children and young people and a joint thematic review of Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA).
The Local Scrutiny Plan was previously known as the Assurance & Improvement Plan (AIP). The AIP identified a rolling programme of planned and risk based scrutiny for the council, based on the shared risk assessment, over a three year period. The last AIP for the period 2014-2017 is published below.
Audit Scotland Targeted Audit of Best Value 2012/13
The first best value audit report on Aberdeenshire Council was published in 2008. The findings concluded that the council was clear about its overall direction and priorities and had been effective in establishing a culture of continuous improvement. However, the findings also noted that to deliver best value fully the council needed to adopt a more strategic approach and to coordinate its plans more effectively. The council needed to increase and maintain the pace of change and to ensure that initiatives were followed through and evaluated.
The updated AIP for 2012-2015, prepared by the LAN set out an assessment of risk and the scrutiny required for Aberdeenshire Council. It included targeted best value audit work in 2012 to consider Leadership - specifically the impact of senior management reorganisation, Challenge and improvement - including self-evaluation, performance management and competitiveness/benchmarking and Managing people - specifically managing the workforce reductions. In addition to the work identified above, we also examined the council's approach to equalities. This work was not in response to an identified risk area but was at the request of the council to assist in its drive to mainstream equalities throughout council work.
The outcomes of the targeted best value work confirmed that a strong senior management team is developing, there is effective performance management, an established improvement culture in the council, and a strategic approach to workforce planning. An improvement agenda was identified and agreed by Aberdeenshire Council in April 2013.
How We Compare to Others
Local Government Benchmarking Project
The Local Government Benchmarking Framework (LGBF) brings together a wide range of information about how all Scottish councils perform in delivering services to local communities. The framework covers most major areas of public service delivery in Scotland and includes information about the cost of services, what outcomes are being achieved and how satisfied residents are with services.
Data is collected on the same basis from each council, so a figure for Aberdeenshire Council is statistically comparable to data provided by Argyll & Bute Council. However, when looking at the information and making comparisons, it should be kept in mind that Scottish councils are democratically elected bodies which represent very diverse communities in terms of geography, population, deprivation levels and community needs. The information should be read and understood in that context, as some of the variation highlighted by the data is significantly affected by such differences between communities.
For further information please visit the Scottish Local Government Benchmarking website.
Data for the indicators has been gathered using a range of sources including statistical and financial returns to the Scottish Government and Audit Scotland, as well as satisfaction figures from the Scottish Household Survey (SHS) from 2013. While we recognise that the SHS figures are reliant on a comparatively small sample size, this is the only residents' survey which covers all 32 local authorities. In order to keep a more regular track of resident satisfaction, the council also uses a variety of local sources to gather resident views. These include the Citizen's Panel and the council's Reputation Tracker. which is reported on a monthly basis.
The LGBF provides an additional tool to support improvement. The indicators within the framework have been incorporated into our strategic service planning framework, monitored through our approach to performance management and will be considered as part of our self-evaluation process where we identify our improvement activity.
We are currently working on improving our performance information. In the meantime, please refer to the agenda and minutes of our committees for performance updates:
- Communities Committee
- Education and Children’s Services Committee
- Infrastructure Committee
- Business Services Committee
You can find further performance information in the publications section of our the website.
To view detailed performance information for Aberdeenshire Council, as well as the rest of Scotland, please access the public data tool developed by the Improvement Service.
The case studies below provide more information about Aberdeenshire Council's performance in some of our core service areas and improvement activities underway to boost outcomes for our communities.
To support data comparisons, Scottish councils have been organised into 'family groups.' Councils are grouped with authorities that share similar characteristics, for example levels of deprivation or rurality. The groups work together to investigate variations in the data and to identify examples of best practice that can be adapted.
Aberdeenshire participated in two pilot studies during 2014. The output of those investigations can be viewed below:
The council continues to be involved in this process and planned activity for 2015 includes participation in the groups for Equalities, Looked After Children and Museums.
Did you find what you were looking for? For any queries or to send us your feedback, please contact the Performance team.