Innovation Exchange

Revenues and Benefits Transformation

Introduction

Key activities

Benefits and impacts

Learning

The Revenues & Benefits service introduced Risk Based Verification, online applications with automated processing for new Housing Benefit & Council Tax Reduction applications and changes of circumstances.

 

Theme: Service Transformation

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  • Adoption of a risk based verification policy.
  • Software now utilised to risk score new Housing Benefit & Council Tax reduction claims and changes - the software places claims into 3 categories, low, medium or high which determines the level of evidence required to verify the claim. The software performs complex predictive modelling previously scrutinised, tested and approved by the DWP. It was estimated and proved to be the case that 50% of our cases on an on-going basis are low risk with minimal or no evidence required, allowing processing which is where the efficiencies were gained. The remaining 50% of cases are split between medium and high risk.
  • Software implemented to allow new claims for HB/CTR and changes to be reported online.
  • Data submitted online now processed automatically.

We have modernised the delivery of the service whilst embracing technology.  Although we have been able to realise efficiency targets and savings, our innovation has also resulted in improved performance, streamlined administration, provided digital channels for our customers whilst improving their customer experience. This is a considerable achievement which can be attributed to our professional and dedicated staff and our success can be summarised as follows:

 

  • Angus Council Excellence Award for Service Improvement in 2011 – for integration of free schools meals with the application for and assessment of Council Tax and Housing Benefit;
  • Commended in 2013 for the high standard of the HB & CTR Service, for delivering continuous improvement, the first to receive “no risk” status from Audit Scotland;
  • £9,000 saving in transport costs and a redeployment of resources;
  • 26% reduction in incoming calls;
  • 27% reduction in counter calls;
  • 67% reduction in outgoing letters;
  • 70% of new claims now online or phone;
  • 79% of changes now online or phone;
  • Up to 25% quicker than Scottish average speed of HB new claims processing in 2014/15;
  • Up to 50% quicker than Scottish average speed of HB changes processing in 2014/15;
  • 28% improvement in speed of HB/CTR new claims processing 15/16 to 14/15;
  • 33% improvement in speed of HB/CTR change of circumstances processing 15/16 to 14/15;
  • 92% either very satisfied or satisfied with the facility to claim online or by telephone;
  • 94% either very satisfied or satisfied with their experience of claiming online or by telephone;
  • Total net savings generated £156,000 including 7.5 FTE posts;
  • In 2015, awarded Institute of Revenues Rating and Valuation (IRRV) ‘Best in Scotland’ award.

How adopting technology and online channels can improve performance, result in efficiencies, reduce costs and enhance the customer experience.

Contact details:

To find out more about this case study, please contact:

 

Graham Ritchie

Revenues and Benefits Service Manager

Angus Council

01382 536569

Case study added to site: June 2016

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