Our Service Innovation and Improvement category recognises partnerships, departments, or teams who have successfully changed their processes and/or developed a new approach to an existing problem. This change will have led to tangible service improvement and a positive impact on the target audience, whether internal or external. Winners have demonstrated sound approaches and techniques in the way that the need for the initiative was identified, planned, implemented and monitored. A strong focus on partnership working has been achieved, as has value for money. The projects have also demonstrated real, quantifiable results in the way that services have been delivered in relation to the expressed needs and wishes of the users .  Winning projects have also been pioneering, and are delivering lasting improvement, with strong potential for replication in other public services.


The Highland Council – The Handyperson Telecare Project

The project is a collaboration between Highland Council, NHS/Health and Social Work, and the Highland Handyperson Service. It sees Handyperson taking on sole responsibility for the installation and maintenance of Telecare equipment pan Highland. Telecare is technology installed in the homes of elderly/disabled people, connected to a “hub” which provides round the clock monitoring and is a key tool to supporting people to remain at home in their community when their condition is such that a greater level of support is required. Initially supported by engineers based out of area, the proposal sought to provide a wholly Highland based service using existing Handypersons to install, maintain, and repair equipment, and includes the development of a pan-Highland emergency out-of-hours breakdown service. Telecare adds tremendous value to the existing Handyperson model, delivering a more complete solution to safer independent living which is quicker, more efficient, and more economic.

Download the full application: Highland Telecare


North Ayrshire Council – A Strategy to deliver high levels of recycling performance against the constraints of decreasing budgets.

North Ayrshire Council has developed a strategy “North Ayrshire Working towards Zero Waste 2012-2016″”. The Council has delivered supporting actions within the strategy which have achieved excellent household participation rates, despite high levels of deprivation within the district and financial pressures on the waste service. During the last six years a trend of continuous improvement in household waste recycling performance has been delivered. The strategy has achieved recycling rates of 56.5%, ranking the Council joint second highest for recycling in Scotland for 2014. This has been achieved whilst implementing an extensive operational review including depot rationalisation to meet the Council’s efficiency agenda.

Download the full application: Waste Strategy

North Ayrshire Council – Customer Service Improvement Strategy

A key principle of our Customer Services’ vision and strategy was to deliver efficiency savings through a channel shift for all customers – internal and external.  The strategy puts the customer at the heart of service design and delivery through using insight and feedback information at every stage of the process.  Customer journey mapping improved access to services whilst reducing the cost of delivery.

Download the full application: Customer Service Improvement Strategy



North Ayrshire Council – Appiness

North Ayrshire Appiness is an innovative, UK award-winning learning programme. It brings together library resources and quality-approved educational apps for very young children and their families, in a learning programme which helps parents/carers to support their child’s development. Parents are often influenced by negative media and can be apprehensive introducing the Early Years audience to apps and hand-held devices. We are using digital learning apps and the North Ayrshire library digital resources to promote attitudinal and behavioural change. After lengthy research we built digital workshops around a menu of apps, linked to the Curriculum for Excellence to support literacy, numeracy, science, technology, music and art for our youngest customers. Early Years colleagues and parents/carers are almost as enthused by the Appiness workshops as our young learners. Appiness develops digital participation by exploring and using a range of reading and ICT programmes, apps and devices in family learning situations in libraries and Early Years centres. Library, Children and Families and Early Years staff are using a range of devices (laptops, iPods, e-book readers and i-Pads) to teach very young users how to play with interactive programmes, promoting child development. Over the last 12 months we have seen a growth in confidence, competence and real enthusiasm from parents who often go on to buy the apps and devices once they understand the education benefits for their children.

Download the full application: Appiness

North Lanarkshire Council  – Clyde Valley Residual Waste Project

The Clyde Valley Residual Waste Project is a collaborative project among five councils to procure a long term (25 years) sustainable waste management solution for the treatment and disposal of approximately 190,000 tonnes per year, of residual waste from the five Partner councils (East Dunbartonshire, East Renfrewshire, North Ayrshire, North Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire).  The service will provide long term savings for all partner councils and allow them to fulfil their obligations to Scotland’s Zero Waste Plan and Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012. All Partner Councils currently landfill residual waste either through operating their own landfill sites or through a contract with a landfill contractor, a practise that will be banned by the Scottish Government in 2020. Following the production of a Business Case showing the benefits and savings that could be achieved by working together, a binding Inter Authority Agreement was signed to procure the new Service. From Service Commencement, waste will be seen as a resource that will produce renewable energy and reduce the Councils’ carbon footprints as well as extracting valuable recyclable materials such as plastics and metals, should they remain in the residual waste stream.
Community Benefits, which comprise 10%, of the evaluation criteria will ensure that the Project creates new jobs, training opportunities, apprenticeships as well as engagement with small and medium businesses to encourage growth and inclusion within this sector.

This is one of the first examples of councils working together to provide the economies of scale necessary to deliver major facilities which are not currently available in the marketplace.

Download the full application: Clyde Valley Residual Waste

West Lothian Community Planning Partnership- West Lothian’s Engaging Communities Toolkit

The Engaging Communities Toolkit has been developed as a user friendly resource to enhance community involvement and empowerment in our local communities by increasing the knowledge, understanding and quality of community engagement practice in West Lothian.   Engaging with communities is not new to us in West Lothian but the ways in which we approach it and support individuals and groups to engage effectively are being developed; which is why the toolkit is a great example of how we are improving processes, skills and practice in relation to engagement to enable local people to become involved in the decisions that affect their lives.  To genuinely engage and empower our communities, we need to inform, consult and involve them in meaningful ways. The development of the Engaging Communities Toolkit is helping staff, individuals and communities work better together to improve services in West Lothian.   The Engaging Communities Toolkit is one step in the bigger task of improving and embedding good community engagement practice in West Lothian. We see this as an ongoing process, and we are already building on this further through the development of training and other innovative ways to build capacity and knowledge.

Download the full application: Engaging Communities

City of Edinburgh Council – Craigour Park  Enhancing Parental Engagement through Learners’ Journals

Craigour Park Primary was the first school in Scotland to recognise the added value of creating a personal online learning journal for every pupil (from nursery to primary 7). Regular updates (pictures and text) are sent to parents’/guardians’ tablets or smartphones to share what their children have been learning and promote teacher / home communication. Both teachers and parents say they love it and everyone has bought into it. It provides an interactive platform for parents to engage in their child’s learning and a window into
school activities. It allows teachers to personalise learning and track next steps whilst allowing for meaningful pupil reflection. As a school management tool, we can track the quality and coverage of all pupils’ journeys through the Experiences and Outcomes in a meaningful and accessible way.

Download the full application: Craigour Park