Building standards customer information and performance

Amendment Record
Date Issue No. Details of changes
April 2017 1 New Document
June 2018 2 Amended Document
September 2018 2 (Document Reviewed - no changes)
December 2018 3 Amended Document
March 2019 3 (Document Reviewed - no changes)

The Building Standards Charter provides information about the standards of service that all verifiers should meet. This gives customers the reassurance that a consistent, high quality service will be delivered no matter which verifier provides the service.

It is divided into two parts:-

  1. National Charter; and
  2. Local Charter

Part 1: National Charter

Our Aims:

  • to grant building warrants and accept completion certificates.
  • to secure the health, safety, welfare and convenience of persons in and about buildings and others who may be affected by buildings or matters connected with buildings
  • furthering the conservation of fuel and power; and
  • furthering the achievement of sustainable development

Our Vision/Values:

To provide a professional, customer focused, timely and informative service to all our customers.

Our Commitments:

We will:

1. Seek to minimise the time it takes for customers to obtain a building warrant or amendment to a building warrant.

2. Ensure continuous improvement around the robustness of our verification assessments to ensure compliance.

3. Meet and seek to exceed customer expectations.

4. Carry out local customer satisfaction research, such as surveys, focus groups etc.

5. Address feedback obtained through local and national customer satisfaction research (including a National Customer Satisfaction Survey) to improve the customer experience.

6. Provide information on local formal complaints procedures and the LABSS Dispute Resolution Service. We will refer customers as required.

7. Provide accurate, evidence based financial data.

8. Engage and participate in partnership working at local and national level to identify and embed service improvements at a national level. Matters to be dealt with:-

  • technical consistency
  • training
  • resource sharing

9. Adhere to a national annual performance report outlining our objectives, targets and performance.

10. Adhere to the commitments outlined in this Charter. This includes information on customer dissatisfaction in relation to:

  • building warrant processing timescales,
  • general processes and procedures
  • technical interpretation

National Performance Targets:

Issue 95% of first reports (for building warrants and amendments) within 20 days (including building warrants and amendments issued without a first report).

Issue 90% of building warrants and amendments within 10 days from receipt of all satisfactory information (not including building warrants and amendments issued without a first report).

National Information on Verification:

National information on verification performance can be found at the Scottish Government website.

Customer Satisfaction:

Our target is to achieve a minimum overall average satisfaction rating of 7.5 out of 10 in any national customer survey undertaken by Scottish Government.

Part 2: Local Commitments

Pre-Application Discussions and Asking for Information or Advice

Where appropriate pre-application discussions are welcomed to encourage high quality Building Warrant applications. This allows an efficient process when Building Warrants are submitted.

By having pre-application discussions it will ultimately save you and the Council time in assessing/approving your Warrant. It will pinpoint areas where compliance is not being achieved at an early stage, thus reducing costly mistakes in the design process.

Building Standards, if you require, can arrange joint meetings with other interested bodies such as Scottish Fire & Rescue (Fire Safety Section), Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Development Management Section, Environmental & Consumer Protection Section etc. to discuss your proposals in order that they can ultimately be given approval from all the relevant statutory bodies.

Contact with Building Standards

Officers are available at Angus House, Orchardbank Business Park, Forfar, during office hours. It is recommended that an appointment be made with the Building Standards team member dealing with your application. If an application has not been lodged or an appointment is not made in advance, a Duty Officer will be available.

  • In person - If you are unable to call in to the office through disability or you may prefer to discuss your proposals on site, a site visit can be arranged.
  • Letters - We will respond to your letters within 15 working days. If a full response cannot be given within that time you will be given a target date.
  • Emails - We will reply within 1 working day either to answer your query or to inform you when a full response will be given.
  • Telephone calls – Calls will be answered quickly, normally within eight rings. and any phone message will be responded to within one working day. Sometimes it will be necessary, indeed in your own interest, to put the substance of your query in writing and to then receive a written response.

No acknowledgements will be given in respect of normal correspondence, the emphasis being placed on early replies within the above framework.

Building Warrant Applications

It is the applicant’s or agent’s responsibility to make sure that the application is submitted correctly. There are two methods of submitting an application. These are:-

Whatever method is used the warrant application must be accompanied by the correct fee before it can be validated. You may also find this fee calculator helpful.

Building Standards staff are available to assist you in applying for a building warrant.

The following are the standards of service you can expect from us in dealing with Building Warrant applications. We may not be able to meet these targets in all cases but we expect to most of the time.

When you submit a Building Warrant application we will:-

  • register all “valid” applications within 5 working days of receipt
  • notify you within 5 working days of receiving your application if it is “invalid” and explain what is required before it can be registered as “valid”
  • provide you with a technical response, or issue your Building Warrant as applicable, within 20 working days from the validation of your application
  • enter into agreement with you (customer agreement) to respond to your Building Warrant application within an agreed timescale

Other than those applications covered by a customer agreement, if you have not received a technical response, or a Building Warrant, as applicable, within 35 working days from receipt of your valid application you have the right to request resolution to the matter. This may be done, in the first instance, by contacting our Building Standards Manager on 01307 473249 or by e-mail at ThomL@angus.gov.uk

You may also contact the Building Standards Division

Examples of applications where a customer agreement can be entered into are:-

  • applications which have an impact on the economic development of Angus
  • applications for adaptations to dwellinghouse to suit the needs of a person with a disability
  • applications which can be assessed under our Instant Plan Assessment Service

Once your Application has been approved

We will:-

  • Provide you with a digital set of your approved documents

 

  • Issue you with a Construction Compliance Notification Plan(CCNP) and associated Completion Checklist. The CCNP will give details of the stages of work that we require to inspect and any actions that require to be carried out by you as the property owner / developer. The Completion Checklist will give full details on the documentation that requires to be submitted along with your Completion Certificate.
  • The Construction Compliance Notification Plan will give details of the stages of work that we require to inspect. It will also give details of the actions that require to be carried out by you as the property owner / developer.
  • Carry out routine site visits within 3 working days of the request if required.
  • If site visits reveal departures from approved plans or there are areas of work which do not comply with the Building Standards (Scotland) Regulations 2004 the applicant/agent, if not notified on site, shall be notified of them in writing. It is the responsibility of the applicant or his agent to notify us when the works are ready for re-inspection.
  • Full and accurate records of site visits will be kept detailing:
    • the date the inspection/test was carried out;
    • who attended the inspection/test;
    • what works were inspected and whether they were found to be in order;
    • any departures from the approved plans;
    • the areas of work which do not comply with the Building Standards (Scotland) Regulations 2004.
  • Respond to 95% of Certificate of Completion submissions within 10 working days.
  • An acceptance of Certificate of Completion will be issued within five working days of the last inspection/required documentation where:-
    • all work was found to have been completed in accordance with the approved plans and the Building Standards (Scotland) Regulations 2004; and
    • all appropriate Certification has been received; and
    • the Completion Certificate submission has been made in the appropriate manner.

 

Property Transfer Procedures (pre-1 May 2005)

 

Requests for non-statutory “Letters of Comfort” in respect of earlier Building Warrant applications where no Certificate of Completion exists, minor unauthorised works undertaken without the benefit of a Building Warrant, will be responded to/assessed within 20 working days. Refer to the ‘Property Transfer Procedures’ Application Form for details and fees payable.

 

Work carried out without the benefit of a building warrant after 1 May 2005 shall be dealt in accordance with the Building(Scotland) Act 2003. This will require the submission of a ‘Completion Certificate Where No Warrant Was Obtained’.

 

The above noted forms can be found at:

https://www.angus.gov.uk/directories/document_category/building_standards_forms_and_certificates

 

TO KEEP EVERYONE INFORMED WE WILL

It is a requirement of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 and the Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004 that we keep a register of all Building Warrants, Amendment to Building Warrants and Completion Certificates. The register is in two parts.

Part 1 is available online

Part 1 contains a list of all applications including details of certificates from approved certifiers submitted in support of Building Warrants or Completion Certificates and decision and copies of notices served under Sections 25 to 30 of the Building (Scotland) Act when issued, altered or withdrawn.

Part 2 consists of copies of Building Warrants, Completion Certificates, certificates from approved certifiers, principal drawings and specifications and all other relevant documents.

We shall maintain Part 1 of the register in accordance with statutory requirements.

We shall maintain Part 2 of the register for 25 years and thereafter for such period in accordance with guidance issued by Scottish Ministers.

The disclosure or copying of documents from the Building Standards register shall not be permitted, where security concerns are raised, unless the owner of the building has consented, in writing, to the disclosure or copying. In addition where the relevant building is a residential building disclosure or copying of Part 2 of the register shall not be permitted unless the person requesting disclosure or copies of documents is the owner/occupier, tenant or prospective owner, occupier, tenant of the relevant building or adjoining building.

COMPLIMENTS, COMMENTS AND COMPLAINTS

Our purpose is to provide all our customers with a good quality service that gets things right first time.

We email out a Customer Survey link with every Building Warrant approval and Completion Certificate Acceptance. This gives you the opportunity to tell us how we dealt with your Building Warrant and/or Completion Certificate. Alternatively you can complete our online survey.

Problems can normally be resolved informally by simply contacting us. If however you do wish to make a formal complaint, the Council operates a formal complaints procedure

You can record details of any compliment or comment on service delivery by referring to the Council’s Customer Care Standards.

If you disagree with an interpretation of the building standards that we are adopting in the consideration of a building warrant that you have submitted or will require to submit you may request an interpretation through the LABSS (Local Authority Building Standards Scotland) Dispute Resolution Process.

HOW TO CONTACT US

Building Standards are based at Angus House, Orchardbank Business Park, Orchardbank, Forfar, DD8 1AN, telephone 03452 777 778. By reference to the Council’s website you can obtain details of all Building Standards team members.

Guidance notes and application forms noted in this Charter are available:-

  • by visiting the Council’s website at www.angus.gov.uk and accessing the Building Standards page or at any Council Office; or
  • by telephoning 03452 777 778 and requesting information to be sent to you, or
  • by e-mailing BSProcessing@angus.gov.uk

Performance (March 2019)

  • first reports issued or warrant approved within 20 working days: 100% (target 95%)
  • building warrants and amendments issued within 10 working days from receipt of all satisfactory information: 98.7% (target 90%)
  • completion certificates responded to within 10 working days: 100% (target 100%)

Customer contact summary of performance (May 2019)

  • calls returned within one working day: 87% (target 85%)
  • emails replied to within one working day: 87% (target 85%)
  • calls answered within eight rings: 100% (target 85%)

Customer survey

National customer survey

Balanced scorecard/Annual performance report

This report can also be viewed on Infogram

DATE   ISSUE NO.    DETAILS OF CHANGE/S
05/04/2018     1.0      New Document (replaced Balanced Scorecard)
31/07/2018    - Reviewed Document
31/10/2018  - Reviewed Document
31/01/2019    - Reviewed Document
30/04/2019 2.0  2018/19 Various Changes in content and layout

            

1.0 Introduction

"The Annual Performance Report is a strategic planning and management tool that is used in business organisations to align business activities to the vision and strategy of the organisation, improve internal and external communications, and monitor performance against strategic goals"

- Performance Framework

Building Standards Verifiers in Scotland are required to utilise the Performance Report to manage, monitor, review and develop strategies for their business and should focus on the performance framework’s core perspectives and cross cutting themes.

This document is the Annual Performance Report for the Building Standards Service of Angus Council for the year 2018-19.

Angus Council’s located in the east coast of Scotland and has a population of 115,978 with a geographical area of some 218,179 hectares. The developed area of the Council is some 2% of the 218,179 hectares with the Scottish average at 2.5%. There are seven main Burghs in the Council area.

With approximately 73% of the population living within the Burghs, Angus Council has a large percentage of its population employed within primary industries such as farming, fishing, forestry and manufacturing with a low percentage employed within service industries.

Burgh populations  
Arbroath 23902
Rural 32671
Forfar 14048
Carnoustie 11394
Montrose 11955
Kirriemuir 6085
Brechin 7481
Monifieth 8366

 Secure the health, safety, welfare and convenience of persons in or about buildings and of others who may be affected by buildings or matters connected with buildings. Further the conservation of fuel and Power. Further the achievement of sustainable development

Building (Scotland) Act 2003

 

2.0 Building Standards Verification Service Information

“The purpose of the Building Standards system is to protect the public interest. The system sets out the essential standards that are required to be met when building work or conversion of a building takes place in order to meeting Building Regulations.

The Building Standards System checks that proposed building work or conversion of a building meets standards; inspections are limited to a minimal necessary to ensure that legislation is not avoided. The control of work on site is not down to the system but is a matter for contracts and arrangements in place between a builder and client.

Verifiers, appointed   by Scottish Ministers are responsible for the independent checking of applications for Building Warrants to construct or demolish buildings, to provide services, fittings or equipment in buildings, or for conversions.”

Location: Angus House, Forfar

The service is responsible for the following:-

  • Verification of Building Warrants under the Building (Scotland) Act 2003
  • Enforcement in relation to Building Standard matters under Building (Scotland) Act 2003
  • Improvement/Repair Grant service under Housing (Scotland) Act 2006
  • Raised structure consents under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982
  • Consultee to applications in relation to Houses in Multiple Occupation & Liquor Licensing

The services provided by the Place Directorate make a major contribution to the quality of life in Angus. In delivering these services the service seeks to implement the principles of sustainable development whilst ensuring that the health and safety of the population is maintained in respect of the built environment.

Council Structure

Chief Executive: Margo Williamson

Depute Chief Executive: Mark Armstrong

Building Standards sits within Planning & Communities in the Communities Directorate

Director of Communities: Stewart Ball

Service Leader – Planning & Communities: Kate Cowey

Building Standards Structure

Manager - Building Standards: Lee Thom

Team Leader - Building Standards: Mike Millar

Building Standards Officers: Bert Beattie, Kris Ferrier, Andrew Barclay, Andy Reid, Brian Clark, Stuart Lyon

Building Standards Technicians: Callan McKenna, Rhys MacKenzie, Sean Knox

Quantity Surveyor: Karen Butchart

Clerical Officers: Pamela Tasker, Ellie McGraw

Management Structure of Council in respect of building standards:

Tier1: 1 Chief Executive

Tier 2: 1 Depute Chief Executive

Tier 3: 1 Director of Communities

Tier 4: 1 Service Leader

    BS verification service Other
Manager No. posts 1  
  vacant 0  
Main grade posts No posts 7 1 team leader post within
  Vacant 0  
Technician No. posts 3  
  Vacant 0  
Office support/clerical No. posts 2  
  Vacant 0  
TOTAL   13  

 

Staff age profile Number
Under 30  2
30-39  5
40-49    1
50 and over  

3

                                                                                      

3.0 Strategic Objectives

The Building Standards service is a consistently high performing and achieving one, accredited to both CSE and ISO 9001 2015 standards.

Work in 2019/20 will continue to be carried out to meet the high standard of customer service as required by our (Customer Service Excellence) accreditation. The Building Standards team currently hold 23 compliance pluses.

As Councils are continuing to make significant financial savings the ongoing service reviews will present challenges in meeting various performance targets. This will continue to require to be managed and measures adopted to ensure that the high level of service previously provided is maintained.

We shall also continue to raise awareness of CCNP's through various aspects of service delivery. We have achieved our objective to fully deliver the Building Standards service digitally and efficiencies are obvious. We shall continue to deliver this ambition and enhance the digital delivery to ensure it remains fully realised. We shall enhance our Document Management System by continuing to securely destroy  completed paper files.

Work in 2019/20 will continue to be carried out to enable the Building Standards team to fully meet the requirements of and remain accredited to the ISO 9001 : 2015 standard.

We have achieved our objective to fully deliver the Building Standards service digitally and efficiencies are obvious. We shall continue to deliver this ambition and enhance the delivery to ensure it remains fully realised. Building Standards will try to take steps within our remit to reduce the average time taken to issue a Building Warrant.

Angus Council Building Standards service has a goal to provide a consistent, high performing, customer focused and high performing service while ensuring the health, safety, welfare and convenience of persons in and around buildings.

4.0 Key Performance Outcomes & Targets

The national verification performance framework is based on three core perspectives:

  • Professional Expertise and Technical Processes
  • Quality Customer Experience
  • Operational and Financial Efficiency

There are also three cross-cutting themes, comprising:-

  • Public Interest;
  • Continuous Improvement; and
  • Partnership Working.

Summary of Key Performance Outcomes (KPOs):

Professional Expertise and Technical Processes

KPO 1: Minimise time taken to issue a first report or issue a Building Warrant or Amendment to Building Warrant

KPO 2: Increase quality of compliance assessment during the construction processes

Quality Customer Experience

KPO 3: Commit to the Building Standards Customer Charter

KPO 4: Understand and respond to the customer experience

Operational and Financial Efficiency

KPO 5: Maintain  financial governance

KPO 6: Commit to eBuilding Standards

KPO 7: Commit to objectives outlined in the annual performance report

 

Summary of Key Performance

KPO1 Targets

1.1: 95% of first reports (for building warrants and amendments) issued within 20 days - all first reports (inc. BW's and amendments issued without a first report).

1.2: 90% of building warrants and amendments issued within 10 days from receipt of all satisfactory information - all building warrants and amendments (not including BW's and amendments issued without a first report).

KPO 2 Targets

2.1: Targets to be developed as part of future review of KPO 2

KPO 3 Targets

3.1: National customer charter is published prominently on the website and incorporates version control detailing reviews (reviewed at least quarterly).

3.2: 95% of BSD requests for information on a BSD 'Veri er Performance Reporting Service for Customers' case responded to by verifier within 5 days.

KPO 4 Targets

4.1: Minimum overall average satisfaction rating of 7.5 out of 10.

KPO 5 Targets

5.1: Building Standards verification fee income to cover indicative verification service costs (staff costs plus 30%)

KPO 6 Targets

6.1: Details of eBuilding Standards to be published prominently on the verifier's website.

6.2: 75% of each key building warrant related process being done electronically

  • Plan checking
  • Building warrant or amendments (and plans) being issued
  • Verification during construction
  • Completion certificates being accepted

KPO7 Targets

7.1: Annual performance report published prominently on website with version control (reviewed at least quarterly)

7.2: Annual performance report to include performance data in line with KPO's and associated targets (annually covering previous year e.g. April 2018-March 2019).

 

5.0 Performance Data

KPO     Target/Requirement  Q1 2018/19 Q2 2018/19 Q3 2018/19 Q4 2018/19 Average
1.1 95% of first report (for BW's and 1.1 Amends) issued within 20 working days 88.58% 72.86% 85.54% 98.31% 86.32%
1.2 90% of building warrants and amends issued within 10 days from receipt of all satisfactory info 92.86%   85.99% 92.24% 98.61% 92.42
3.1 National customer charter is published prominently on the website and incorporates version control detailing reviews (revised at least quarterly)
3.2 95% of BSSD requests for information on a BSD verifier performance reporting service for customers case responded to within 5 days zero cases zero cases zero cases zero cases zero cases
4.1 Minimum overall average satisfaction rating of 7.5 out of 10 8.3 out of 10 - 2018 results
5.1 Building standards verification fee income to cover indicative verification service costs (staff costs plus 30%) 164.51% 130.56% 101.55% 118.06% 123.96%
6.1 Details of E-Building Standards are published prominently on the verifier's website
6.2 75% of each key building warrant related processes being done electronically (Plan checking; BW's and amends (and plans) issue; verification during construction; CC acceptance) 100% (4 of 4 done) 100% (4 of 4 done) 100% (4 of 4 done) 100% (4 of 4 done) 100% (4 of 4 done)
7.1 Annual performance report published prominently on website with version control (reviewed at least quarterly)
7.2 Annual performance report to include performance data in line with KPO's and associated targets (annually covering previous year)

                     

6.0 Service Improvement and Partnership Working

Protocols for Dealing with Work

Work in relation to Building Warrants, Late Building Warrants, Completion Certificates and Completion Certificates Where No Warrant Was Obtained are the subject of extensive and detailed protocols. As the requirements of the Performance Framework gain momentum in respect of Construction Compliance Notification Plans, the protocols will be suitably amended. As part of our work to gain ISO 9001 : 2015 accreditation, all major procedures in relation to the above have been process mapped and amended, as appropriate. These procedures are also subject to internal and external auditing on an annual basis.

Performance Management Systems

The performance of the Council as a whole is maintained via Pentana Performance Management System. Actions relating to Building Standards which are contained in the Divisional Operational Plan are updated on a quarterly basis. Various and detailed ‘hit list’ reports are used to assist the management of workload and weekly performance and we have recently invested in Enterprise to further enhance our management systems. We also regularly utilise the Uniform Statutory Reports and additional access reports to monitor performance.

Training & Development (CPD)

Appraisals which have a focus on training and development needs through the Councils performance management system, Pentana, are carried out on an annual basis and training requirements is a standing item on the Building Standards team meeting agenda.

The service has a track record in committing significant resources to training over a significant period of time which has resulted in excess of 60% of verification staff (seven in total) holding chartered membership of the RICS. A member of staff gained full membership of the RICS this year. One other member of staff has started their structured training to work towards gaining membership of RICS. In addition the service has an open approach to training/CPD with all staff encouraged to undertake training, such as SBEM/SAP, fire risk assessments etc. All training/CPD for staff is logged on our Intranet 'Sharepoint' site serving Building Standards. We also log a skills audit which records mandatory training where required. In addition, staff who are members of the RICS are obliged to carry out and record a minimum of 20 hours appropriate CPD and staff are encouraged/supported in this requirement where possible.

Benchmarking/Shared Services/Partnership Working

The Building Standards service of Angus Council is a member of the Tayside Building Standards Consortium and attends the regular meetings of same. There is a minimum of three meetings a year which discuss/agree various matters in relation to Building Standards. This also feeds into our support of the Local Authority Building Standards Scotland (LABSS) which in turn supports the Building Standards Division (BSD) Building Standards has been heavily involved in partnership working with our Legal, Housing and Fire Safety colleagues in respect of work in relation to migrant worker accommodation and houses in multiple occupation. Building Standards in Angus were instrumental in setting up a benchmarking group for building standards bodies who hold CSE. This group meets regularly and the members of the group who all hold CSE, discuss issues in relation to customer service and highlight exemplar activities.

Succession Planning

As highlighted under the heading Training and Development (CPD) the Building Standards Service of Angus Council has invested considerable resources to ensure the Building Standards team are given the appropriate opportunities and training to allow them to become professionally qualified. Seven members of staff hold professional membership of RICS and there is one other who has started their APC to become a RICS member. The Council run a suite of management training sessions and forums under the banner “Transforming Angus” which the Building Standards Manager and Team Leader both participate in. This training includes extensive group sessions, 360 interviews with a range of staff and coaching on any identified areas for improvement. Given this investment in training the staff of the Building Standards team are well placed to deal with any issues arising from succession planning.

Quality Customer Experience

The Building Standards team in Angus have held the CSE (Customer Service Excellence) standard since 2010. Presently the team hold 23 compliance pluses   which in the words of our external assessor is exceptional. By holding this recognised external accreditation Building Standards in Angus provides a service which is :- Accessible; Knows   and engages with its customers; Of high quality; Sets demanding standards in terms of performance and customer satisfaction.

Customer Communication Strategies

The service engages with customers on various levels and are continually looking and adapting to new or more relevant ways of customer engagement such as:

  • Agent Meetings
  • National and local surveys
  • Customer suggestions forms
  • Customer Service Excellence(CSE) annual review meetings/reviews
  • Targeted/direct consultations regarding specific issues/projects
  • Newsletters/mail drops
  • Customer Feedback(national/local)/analysing and changes to system

The Building Standards service engages in a continuous customer survey which is continuously maintained and reported on quarterly. In financial year 2018/9 92% of our customers were either very satisfied or fairly satisfied with our service. The target set is 90%. The results of the most recent national customer survey in 2018 show that the overall score for the Building Standards team is still well above the national average.

Accessibility of the Service

The Building Standards Team have continued to provide a walk-in Duty Officer service during all normal office hours while embracing the ‘agile’ environment that Angus Council have provided. We can also be contacted also by phone, email and letter. If customers are unable to visit us we can arrange a site visit instead.

Customer Charter

The Customer Charter is published and reviewed quarterly to ensure its ongoing suitability. It clearly sets out our commitments to the customer and the requirements of a national charter have been incorporated into our Local Charter.

Pre-application Advice

Pre-application advice where relevant is welcomed and allows Building Warrants when submitted to be dealt with as efficiently as possible. Building Standards will also arrange joint meetings with other interested bodies such as Fire Scotland, Scottish Environment Protection Agency(SEPA), Development Management etc.

Customer Agreements

The Building Standards Team offer customer agreements where the standard 20 days is not appropriate such as our ‘instant plan assessment service’. This example allows the assessing Officer/Technician to enter into an agreement to assess the application within a different timescale (i.e. 3 days, 1 week etc.

Customer Dissatisfaction (Technical or Procedural)

Customers can make complaints, comments or compliments and these procedures are detailed in our Local Customer Charter. Technical Decision disagreements can be escalated in house when requested or customers are referred to the LABSS Dispute Resolution Service.

Recognised External Accreditations

As noted previously the Building Standards team in Angus has held the CSE standard since 2010. In 2012 it was successful in being accredited to ISO 9001 : 2008 making the successful transition to the 2015 standard in 2016 at the first time of asking. In 2016 and 2017 the Building Standards team in Angus were awarded the outstanding team award by LABSS (Local Authority Building Standards in Scotland).

7.0 Operational & Financial Efficiency

Team Structure

The Building Standards team in Angus has altered its team structure and priorities over the last year to react to reduced resources and put additional emphasis on inspections. In addition, Building Standards Technicians deal with lower risk defective and dangerous buildings and a Quantity Surveyor deals with Private Sector Housing Grants. A Processing team of two serve Building Standards. They deal with all processing matters in relation to Building Warrants, Completion Certificates etc. In addition, there is additional staff resources available to deal with other business support duties and IT requirements.

I.T. Systems

Building Standards in Angus, as indicated earlier is part of the wider Planning Service and has since 1998 used the CAPS/Idox software system as its main operating system. Prior to that and from 1993 the Ludhouse software system was used. We are currently implementing the Enterprise workflow system as an improvement.

Digital services

As part of our ambitious work to deliver an end to end digital service we have invested a considerable sum of money to purchase electronic devices to enable Building Warrant files to be taken to site in an electronic format. This investment has allowed us to destroy all paper files (with the exception of a relatively small amount from 1998 - 2004 which have still to be quality assured for scanning purposes. This has also led to a transformation as to how we receive, assess and approve building warrants which now fully digital provides efficiency savings to both ourselves and the customers. This work and decision results in us holding Part II of the Statutory Register electronically.

Time Recording System

The time recording facility on Uniform is used to capture the time spent by staff on verification duties. This is used to provide our Finance Division with the necessary information to allow them to provide details on the costs of Building Standards staff involved in verification. Staff costs not directly involved in Building Standards, but providing a service to Building Standards whether it be management, administration, financial are calculated on a pro-rata basis.

Financial Monitoring/Governance

All fees recovered are logged on Uniform and this permits fee income on a monthly basis to be monitored. The income levels are reported to the regular

Divisional Management team meetings and discussed at regular meetings with our Finance colleagues. Furthermore, matters in relation to revenue/capital budgets are monitored and discussed on a monthly basis.

Finance Systems

All monies received in respect of building warrant fees are logged on Uniform and in addition are also recorded on the corporate financial system, Integra. This permits monies received and budgets to be monitored by the Building Standards Manager and Finance colleagues. Monthly updates are given to us for information and action.

Internal Communication Strategies

Good internal communications are delivered in a number of ways. At a corporate level the Council produces a weekly mini electronic newsletter and also communicates via the Council intranet. Every three months there is a Leadership Forum with all managers from the Council attending. In addition Middle Managers’ Forums are held by the Deputy Chief Executive. At departmental/divisional/team level there are a number of meetings held to allow communications to be cascaded up and down the structure. The Building Standards’ team hold a minimum of 11 team meetings a year where, a set agenda meeting the standards set by ISO 9001 : 2015 is followed. A new and improved Building Standards 'portal' on the corporate Sharepoint site is a key to good communication and the sharing of information. It now serves as the focal point for all procedures and quality matters in relation to Building Standards. It continues to be enhanced on a regular basis.

 

6.0 Service Improvements and Partnership Working

In the previous 12 months 2018/19 we achieved the following:

Number         Continuous Improvement Action  Status
1 Re-organise the structure of the Building Standards team to compensate for loss of one Senior Building Standards Officer. Complete
2 Replace vacant Graduate Building Standards Officer. Complete
3 Seek to re-write all Processing Processes and Procedures to ISO 9001: 2015 standard. Processes and Procedures to reflect the E2E digital/electronic delivery of the Building Standards service. Ongoing
4 Enhance ability to work in an agile environment. Where appropriate and necessary, supply of appropriate hardware to staff for home working. Ongoing
5 Carry out all work including internal audit to ensure ISO 9001: 2015 accreditation is achieved. Complete
6 Carry out all work to ensure our CSE registration is achieved and investigate modern methods of customer engagement Complete
7 Carry out a detailed analysis of the requirements of the Operating Framework (condition of our appointment) and prepare how we meet same. Complete

                                                                

In the next 12 months 2019/20 we will do the following:

Number Continuous Improvement Action Timescale
1 Fully embed Enterprise workflow system for enhanced performance management 2020
2 Create a mentoring guide to enhance governance procedures August 2019
3 Seek to re-write all Processing Processes and Procedures to ISO 9001: 2015 standard. Processes and Procedures to reflect the E2E digital/electronic delivery of the Building Standards service. July 2019
4 Hold a collaborative customer engagement event with various customers and stakeholders October 2019
5 Carry out all work including internal audit to ensure ISO 9001: 2015 accreditation is achieved. 2020
6 Carry out all work to ensure our CSE registration is achieved and investigate modern methods of customer engagement 2020
7 Carry out a detailed analysis of the requirements of the Operating Framework (condition of our appointment) and prepare how we meet same. Ongoing
8 Enhance digital delivery of Customer Communications 2020

 

 In the previous 12 months 2018/19 we worked with:

Partners  Examples of Partnership Working
Tayside Building Standards Consortium
  • Technical issues
  • Benchmarking meeting
  • Surveyors meetings
Scottish Government
  • E-Development - attendance at various Stakeholders Meetings
  • Arranged joint meeting in Forfar with Building Standards, Development Standards, agents and officials of Scottish Government to discuss matters in relation to eDevelopment portal
LABSS
  • Member of STAS
  • STAS assessment
  • Participated/respond to enquiries from Technical Working Group
  • Participated in electrical training
Customers
  • Arranged a number of meetings with Agents to promote use of eDevelopment Portal O
  • Offered 1 to 1 advice/help to customers on use of eDevelopment Portal
Other local authorities
  • Participated in CSE Benchmarking Group
  • Hosted visit to Angus Council of Stirling Council, Building Standards

                                                   

In the next 12 months 2019/20 we will:

Partners  Examples of partnership working
Tayside Building Standards Consortium
  • Technical issues
  • Benchmarking meeting
  • Surveyors meetings
Scottish Government E-Development - attendance at various Stakeholders Meetings
LABSS
  • Member of STAS
  • STAS assessment
  • Participate/respond to enquiries from Technical Working Group
  • Participate in any relevant training
  • Attend LABSS quarterly meetings
Customers
  • Arranged a number of meetings with Agents to promote use of eDevelopment Portal
  • Offered 1 to 1 advice/help to customers on use of eDevelopment Portal
  • Engage with customers to enhance 'Customer Journeys'
  • Collaborate with customers to create 'help' online videos
Other local authorities
  • Participate in CSE Benchmarking Group
  • Continue to benchmark with other local authorities and share good practice

 

7.0 Additional Data

Online customer survey