Watford Borough Council
Watford is an ambitious council that thinks big and lives up to its motto of being bold. Through our Watford 2020 programme we are embarking on a major change and improvement journey. This programme isn’t just about transforming how the council operates, but also providing a digital infrastructure for our town that provides local businesses with a competitive advantage and enhances the quality of life of residents.
A programme plan for Watford 2020 has been developed and will enable delivery of the vision to ensure that:
- Our high-performing services will provide an excellent customer experience and will be designed from the customer’s perspective.
- Our services will be digital by design, exploiting opportunities provided by existing and emerging technology to deliver significant efficiencies.
- We are innovative, bold and entrepreneurial in continually challenging ourselves to reduce costs, generate income and improve performance.
Over the last few months the programme has been delivering initiatives at pace and we have no intention of slowing…
We have been working hard to improve our customer experience and over the last couple of months we have been the only council repeatedly ranked in the GovMetric top 10 for customer satisfaction across all channels. We are looking to improve our service further, we have recently launched our new digital self-service reception area and have started migrating services onto a new CRM supporting enhanced online self-service.
Watford town centre WiFi was launched over the summer, we now have over 40k registered users and a Town Centre App with national reach. This together with our town centre footfall monitoring system, provides valuable intelligence to help ensure we provide a good experience for our town centre customers and support our local businesses.
We are exploring opportunities to enhance the internet connectivity offer to local businesses through wireless broadband. We have also been accepted as a pilot area to use emerging technology that has the potential to provide a Watford-wide infrastructure supporting the application of the “Internet of Things”.
We have focused as well on place shaping – regeneration of brownfield sites, delivering new commercial space and new homes and optimising the deployment of £100m of property assets to secure further economic growth. In the last four years, there has been notable success including:
- A joint venture with Kier to form a local asset backed vehicle was created, delivering over 1000 new homes and a new community in West Watford;
- The lease agreement with Orion to deliver a 500 unit residential led mixed use scheme was signed;
- The development agreement to create a new 1.4 million sq.ft. retail and leisure destination was signed with intu;
- The indoor market was relocated to a newly constructed eye catching setting;
- The funding and delivery agreement for the extension of the Metropolitan line to Watford Junction, creating two new stations, was signed although the new Mayor of London is reviewing the cost;
- The Joint Venture with the Housing trust to deliver social and affordable homes was established;
- The Property Investment Board to trade low value capital assets for higher yield investments was established and has already secured over £1m in increased revenue to the council;
- Watford Commercial Services, the council’s own trading company was formed.
All this change means developing new skills and ways of working for our workforce within a dynamic culture, whilst holding on to the high levels of engagement we enjoy - as demonstrated by our achievement of Gold accreditation for our Investors in People status last year.
We’re sure you will agree that we are at an exciting point as a council. We are looking for a Head of Human Resources who can match our ambition, enthusiasm and drive.