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Andrew Larner: Improvement and innovation at your fingertips

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I recently attended a seminar on the future of retail. It was an interesting mixture of digital and high street, about a curated experience that starts in the home but continues seamlessly in the high street.

It is this attractive ‘retail’ experience, guiding you to the resources you need, that the Local Government  Association is building to support sector-led improvement and innovation.

At the local level, councils are not just improving but really innovating in driving forward the development of more thriving and resilient communities. We want to share the latest thinking on what works as efficiently and effectively as possible. By taking a digital approach, it allows us to share our information, any time, any place, anywhere: not just broadcasting the information, but creating a real exchange of the latest practice that is inclusive and easy to use. 

To support this exchange, we have developed an improvement and innovation model. The model is based upon the iESE ‘from surviving to thriving’ model which was updated and published last year. Local authorities have been supporting the development of this model for more than five years now. 

This column was supplied and paid for by the Improvement & Efficiency Social Enterprise (iESE) 

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Copy of iese logo

The model provides a common language for a set of resources accessed via a self-assessment tool. The assessment looks at key characteristics of change as they go through a number of levels, from the beautiful basics to the latest innovations across the sector. The output isn’t a ranking, but it does provide a real chance to reflect on where you are, where you want to be and place at your fingertips the resources and networks for the next stage of your journey.

But you can only compare yourself if you get involved, which is why the beta test is now available for you to try today – https://beta.eic.esd.org. uk. The information you share will not only allow us to crowd source those who have experience and expertise to help you get to next level, but to also work on the barriers to innovation together. 

The online tool additionally gives you the opportunity to feed back where barriers, legal or wider public sector partnership, are blocking progress. So the  assessment will not only help us improve and innovate, but help the sector articulate those things where changes can release more growth and renewal in the way our communities deserve.

Andrew Larner, chief executive, Improvement & Efficiency Social Enterprise (iESE)

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