61 – Public value gap analysis. Some actions.

Posted by Colin Weatherby                                                                         280 words


I posted on a tool that can help to identify gaps in public value creation. This post briefly suggests some actions for each gap.

The first gap between actual performance and operating capacity, or potential performance, is best addressed though organisational processes to improve productivity. Recognising the gap is important and then it is in the hands of the organisation to justify its performance or improve it. Utilising all available operating capacity efficiently is the responsibility of organisational management.

Gap 2 requires something new to happen. It isn’t simply a matter of being more efficient and productive. The decisions about what services and service levels will be provided need to be reviewed when this gap exists. If there are insufficient resources to deliver on the public value proposition, a process is required to review the public value expected. This will require community engagement. The crowd sourcing, web budgeting, and focus group approaches being used by councils could be appropriate. Alternatively, if increasing resources to provide more value is required, it is a political decision in the hands of the councillors.

In some ways, the most important gap is gap 3. It is the one that causes the most confusion. It is where everyone with a view about the services or service levels that should be offered by the council find a voice. From their views the council needs to determine what services will be offered, what the service levels will be, and which customers will receive those services. Typically, these are established through policies and strategic plans. It should definately be the domain of the Council Plan and its mission. Key decisions are required about strategy, which then define the public value proposition. Not every council finds this easy.