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Local Government Transformation: A Case Study

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In 2010 the London Borough of Tower Hamlets faced huge challenges, with an increasing demand on Council services in an area where over 50% of residents depended on welfare benefits when the organisation was making difficult choices driven by the largest savings target in the Council's history.


Waterhouse was approached by the Borough to discuss a Transformation programme they were considering embarking upon.


Using our understanding of how to successfully deliver savings in local government, Waterhouse designed a solution which entailed


  • a programme focused on: redesigning services so that they are delivered better and more efficiently; more efficient use of fewer assets; increasing staff productivity; and optimising income – with resources re-targeted on essential front-line services;
  • recruiting and appointing cost-effective interim managers, who had a demonstrable and proven track record of success in working in local government, to work with the Council’s staff in delivering the programme and its various workstreams.



Waterhouse introduced Jens Gemmel, a Transformation Adviser, to the Chief Executive and the Resources Director, as the Council-wide programme lead. Using our knowledge of talent in the sector Waterhouse were then able to recruit the right interim resources at the right time to lead programmes in the following areas:


(i) Successful Strategic Partnerships

(ii) Smarter Working

(iii) Better Asset Management

(iv) Lean

(v) Income Optimisation


The Transformation programme is delivering £35m cashable savings in 2011/2012, and will deliver more than £80m overall.