Mutual Ventures

Wakefield Children’s Services

Mutual Ventures was commissioned by Wakefield Council in October 2017 to provide performance improvement support to the Children’s Services senior leadership team, and Business Intelligence service. The initial phase of work over a 3-month period included:

  • Designing a performance management framework for Children’s Social Care to provide the senior leadership team with accurate, timely, and purposeful business intelligence across the service. This included implementing a suite of performance dashboards, scorecards, and developing a core dataset/set of Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s);
  • Establishing a data quality framework to ensure that data and information held within the case management system was managed in a structured way, to improve the accuracy and timeliness of data extracts to ensure the service is working to ‘one version of the truth’;
  • Providing direct support and coaching to staff to improve their analytical capabilities and increase the level of data confidence, and support managers across the wider service to understand what the data is telling them, and how they might respond; and
  • Advising on a fit for purpose team structure, supporting the implementation of that structure including preparing Job Profiles/Specifications, designing the recruitment and selection process, and participating in the induction programme and ongoing mentoring to new staff.

Our approach was based on one of partnership, focused on long-term transformation and sustainable improvement to ensure that the Council’s workforce was supported to develop their professional knowledge and skill set as part of this programme of work, rather than a ‘quick fix’. Our independent challenge and expertise enabled us to develop effective relationships and build the necessary momentum to drive the change required at pace.

The feedback received from our clients evidences the positive impact the first phase of work has had in supporting Wakefield in their improvement journey.  A second phase of work focusing on quality assurance and wider performance management across other service areas in now underway.

Corporate Service Manager Policy, Partnerships, Performance:

“I cannot rate highly enough the impact your work with us has had. What has most impressed us is how different your approach is in comparison to other consultants. Before the commission began you explained that you don’t just come in and define the problem, you work hands on with individuals to develop solutions, and that has certainly been the case. The intensive coaching with our staff has raised the quality of the service significantly, as well as having a real boost to their expertise, confidence and morale.

You have taken responsibility for producing a series of critical background documents, which means you have left us with a sustainable legacy, both in terms of tangible outputs and individuals having the skills and knowledge to carry on where you have left off.

We have thoroughly enjoyed working with you and wish we could keep you here forever!”

Service Director Children’s Services:

“You came to Wakefield highly recommended and have far exceeded all of our expectations. The first phase of work has been delivered with absolute precision, with all key milestones achieved and within timescale.

It is evident that you operate from an in-depth knowledge base, underpinned by extensive experience in the field of Children and Families. What has been most impressive and stands apart from other consultancies is that you really get alongside managers and staff to model and coach leadership to ensure that learning is embedded.

I cannot recommend you highly enough in terms of the level of skills and expertise you have brought to our organisation to assist us on our improvement journey.”