Action teams to aid councils announced

The government has announced the winners of the performance
action team contracts for the four zero-star rated social services
departments announced in May.

Multinational management consultancies KPMG, Deloitte and Touche
and PricewaterhouseCoopers have begun work with Coventry and
Walsall, Birmingham, and North East Lincolnshire respectively to
implement their emergency action plans.

PA Consulting and former consultancy Arthur Andersen, which were
also short-listed, failed to win a contract. The Department of
Health also said that there were “no appropriate bids” from the
public sector.

The teams will support the four social services departments on a
short-term basis, and improvements must be made by October or the
government will consider “statutory intervention powers”.

A spokesperson for the Department of Health said: “The main thrust
of the performance action teams is to support staff to develop
their capacity and systems, and to deliver improved social
services, particularly those in relation to children’s care.”

See below for targets:

KPMG at Walsall

  • Supporting the introduction of a performance management
    approach in social services.
  • Developing social services’ commissioning capacity.
  • Reducing delays in the provision of occupational therapy
    equipment and adaptations.

KPMG at Coventry

  • Providing quality assurance to the performance improvement
  • Supporting timely and consistent assessments of children in
    need and child protection services.
  • Redesigning and developing the looked-after children

Deloitte and Touche at Birmingham

  • Maximising and improving the reviewing system for children on
    the child protection register or looked after.
  • Modelling location and cost of placements outside the city with
    a view to reducing such placements.
  • Reviewing existing action plans and ensuring integrated
    improvement plan.

PricewaterhouseCoopers at North East

  • Monitoring implementation of the council’s performance action
  • Developing a children’s strategy in conjunction with the
  • Assisting managers in improving the quality of social worker
    assessments and care planning.

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