London Borough of Barking & Dagenham

Driving better partnership working

 

In 2018, Xantura were commissioned to assist the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham council to support their transformation towards a more preventative service model and improve partnership working to ultimately improve the way vulnerable or potentially vulnerable groups are supported. This required a shift to acute intervention, reduced dependency on council; strengthened neighbourhood working; and improved communication between services, partnership organisations and community hubs.

The demand for services has only been accelerated by the pandemic – the financial and broader impacts that this has had on many households has led to increasing demand on councils to provide additional support to residents.

Throughout this period, Xantura supported LBBD by utilising innovative data analytical tools and predictive modelling providing a holistic view of an individual or household helping to inform preventative services and appropriate support.

The Challenge:

The challenge that many councils face, is that the first time they become aware of a household needing support is when a resident presents to them in a crisis situation. At this point, it is often too late to explore and deliver a range of interventions that may have prevented the situation arising or worsening and means a more specialised and costly intervention is likely to be needed.

There is also the need to address a culture of high dependence on the council and replace this with a focus on acute intervention, crisis management and ‘helping people to help themselves.’ This has been particularly difficult in recent times due to reduced funding, demand pressures, and the complex challenges of improving entrenched socio-economic and well-being issues.  This has been further exacerbated by the financial effects of the pandemic.

Council staff and service teams are also facing many challenges themselves including administrative burden, data quality issues (duplication and cohort management etc) and management of increasing volumes of resident data held across both internal and external systems.

£7.8 bn

Funding Gap that local services are expected to face by 2025

The Solution:

Xantura have worked closely with the council to improve partnership working by providing access to a ‘Single View of a Household’ using our OneView infrastructure.

OneView is an innovative data and analytics platform that allows LBBD to match data from a wider variety of different sources and then view this data at an aggregate level to identify relevant cohorts and their associated risk.  The platform also enables access to identifiable case summaries and case management where there is a legal basis and where data sharing protocols exist.

OneView combines data from multiple different areas which enables councils to have a holistic view of households and utilises predictive modelling to enable the earlier identification and support of those with escalating risks. OneView currently combines a wide range of structured data and unstructured case notes from over fifteen internal sources and external partnerships which better reflects the journeys of residents. The tool enables data extraction to be automated and matched using a unique pseudonymisation approach which considers information governance best practice and public concern around privacy and predicative analytics.

Strict Information Governance is crucial for safeguarding the rights and privacy of individuals and providing partner organisations with the confidence that information is shared appropriately on a legally compliant basis. As such, all data sharing within xantura’s infrastructure is: Legally Compliant, Delivering benefit & improved outcomes for residents, Proportionate, Robust, Transparent and Responsible. The ICO have completed a full review of the partnership between LBBD and Xantura and how data is used.

Identify cohorts of households with escalating risks so that proactive support can be offered to prevent worsening future outcomes

Deliver holistic case summaries to frontline staff, embedded into their core systems, to give them the information they need to make more informed decisions

Evaluate the effectiveness of interventions in different circumstances

The Outcomes:

Utilising partnership working and improving the way services share information has enabled a shift towards more preventative work and away from crisis intervention which has delivered a variety of positive outcomes for residents, staff, and the council overall.

Whilst there are many positive outcomes for residents, there were also many for council teams and partners. Information and case summaries about residents are relevant and easily accessible for all partners and stakeholders which is embedded in robust and effective information sharing and governance practice.

Having access to a ‘single view of a household’ reduces administrative burden for staff and provides more time to be reinvested in identifying and providing appropriate prevention or support.

People supported through Community Hubs during Covid

Families helped via Troubled Families, against a target of 3,038

Residents targeted through a Financial Hardship & Covid support Scheme worth £900k+

%

Increase in Homelessness Preventions

%

Original budget saved through Medium Term Financial Strategy, representing £5m

What they said:

“As many authorities have seen, at Barking & Dagenham we had experienced severe demand increases, whilst budgets had dramatically reduced. We realised we had to act otherwise we would tip into the abyss.

We therefore embarked on a radical transformation journey, where we feel we have developed a “new kind of council”. We have moved away from corporate silos, and traditional departments into a way of operating that is focused on engagement, prevention, and inclusive growth. This is all underpinned with data and insight, we had work smarter, understand root cause issues, and prevent demand.

In Xantura we found the perfect partner that shared our vision of what public service could achieve using information and data analytics. Together we have seen considerable marked improvements saving millions of pounds and helping thousands of residents. Whilst so much has been achieved, there is still much to do and through our partnership I am excited to see what is next in how we reach out further working with partners and our communities.”     

Mark Fowler
Strategic Director
Community Solutions
London Borough Barking & Dagenham

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