A Behavioural Insights Smash Course for Local Authorities

Nudge, Behavioural Insights and local authorities

Behavioural Insights and ‘Nudge’ techniques are being used extensively across central government and the commercial sector. This approach has shown time and again how small changes can significantly reduce costs and increase revenue. Over recent years our work has shown how these techniques can be used address challenges specific to local authorities.

“Very thought provoking with the right balance of theory and practical application. Highly recommended”—Darren Knight, Head of Customer Service and Communications, Suffolk Coast District Council.

Local authority challenges

The role of a local authority is complex and wide-ranging. This creates a unique set challenges for the sector, currently being exacerbated by increased demand for services and falling resources. In many cases, this can result in frustrated service users and de-motivated employees, which in turn can increase demand even further and hinder innovation – at the very moment that organisations should be modernising. At a time when an increasingly aging population is causing cash-strapped LAs to face up to potential decline in services, new evidence-based ways of operating are essential.

A Behavioural Insights solution

Our work across public, private sector and third sectors has shown that using Behavioural Insights to nudge behaviour change (in staff as well as service users) can successfully reduce demand on services, and improve VFM through:

  • Increasing debt collection rates
  • Increasing effective engagement
  • Reducing demand for services through encouraging self-service and formation of new habits
  • Achieving channel shift to deliver digital engagement
  • Changing the way employees deliver services through understanding and adapting attitudes
  • Directing scarce resources to areas where efforts can have greatest impact
  • Freeing up resources to focus on those in greatest need

“The course was both thought provoking and challenging – a great blend of informative with a healthy amount of pragmatism and paced just right. Highly recommended”—Jamie Martin, Head of Community Regeneration, Magenta Living.

Our experience

For over a decade, we have been applying behavioural insights through consultancy support and training with dozens of organisations across all sectors. We have developed a deep specialism working with social housing providers and local authorities and are pleased to offer this bespoke course specifically designed for this sector.

Why Should I Attend?

On the one-day course, delegates will:

  • Understand the basics of ‘Nudge’ and behavioural insights
  • Design small, effective changes to issues that can be applied immediately
  • Gather inspiration from a range of case studies and examples that have been proven to work.
  • Discover how data, insight and segmentation can provide direct assistance
  • Learn how to model the cost of what you do and perform basic VFM calculations
  • Design a randomised controlled trial to rigorously evaluate interventions

“The Smash Course was fully subscribed in a matter of days!—Darren Knight, Head of Customer Service and Communications, Suffolk Coast District Council.

How does it work?

We will deliver a one-day in-house course for up to 25 people.  We suggest that attendees can either be from one service (in order to create a big, localized impact) or from across a range of services (to create a more wide-spread impact over a longer timeframe). Delegates will receive materials to take away and will be motivated and enthused to create change immediately they return to their day jobs.

Which service areas would benefit most?

We are certain that everyone can learn something from attending this course, but for immediate operational impact we suggest considering application in the following areas:

  • Council tax, rent and collection of any income
  • Contact centres
  • Services that receive many unsolicited contacts – planning, environmental health, trading standards
  • Services that receive referrals from other agencies / teams – adults social care, children’s services
  • Public health
  • Community development
  • Demand management generally – including channel shift and digital transformation

Contact Anna O’Halloran for more details

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