Community Works: Putting work, skills and enterprise at the heart of Community Budgets

The report makes a number of recommendations, including:

  • The development of new Local Concordats between central and local government, local public services and other key local partners. The scope of Concordats should be defined locally, but could include: economic development and regeneration, employment and skills, supporting families, commissioning of health and social services, early years and reducing re-offending.
  • Over time, the alignment of boundaries and commissioning timetables for the commissioning and delivery of public services – for example criminal justice, employment and healthcare.
  • The development of a ~”What Works~” Centre on locally-integrated service delivery, to build the evidence base on what works and provide a platform for sharing practice.
  • Alignment of settlement periods across employment, skills, health and local authority budgets and exploring how integrated commissioning agreements can be tested.
  • A new, non-statutory ~”duty to cooperate~” between local authorities, Jobcentre Plus, employment services providers and training providers – placing an expectation on those organisations to co-operate in setting local employment and skills priorities, allocating resources, and designing and commissioning service delivery.
  • The development of new ~”off the shelf~” investment models to quantify and map savings from supporting key groups currently outside mainstream support to move closer to (and ultimately into) work – for example the very long-term unemployed, existing ESA claimants and lone parents with children under 5. These could then be used by areas to raise investment through social impact bonds or directly from public bodies.
  • Co-commissioning of future employment programmes with local areas, where those areas are able to bring financial resources and demonstrate the benefits in terms of better integrated and aligned services.