Trafford Council wanted to rethink the shape and purpose of what the council should be, modernising how they work with and for residents, businesses and partners of the borough in line with their 2023 vision of a people-focused, digitally enabled, commercially minded council with high-performing place-based services providing excellent citizen experiences.

Trafford invited FutureGov to work with the Modernisation Team in a ten-week review of the council, working with staff and partners to understand the opportunities for change and how to address any challenges.




maturity workshops


show and tells


Using a Maturity Assessment framework, we engaged staff and leadership to understand what ‘good’ looks like across the council. We invited individuals from across the council at every level to share insights and rate the organisation against a maturity scale of 1 to 4 across seven areas: resident/local citizen experience, internal products and systems, culture and ways of working, governance, talent and skills, data and insights and partnerships.

The maturity assessment scale framework for a 21st-century Trafford council

Staff and managers rated the council an average of “2 - services being designed/improved”. Through staff conferences, partnership events and show and tells, we invited staff and partners to challenge the findings of the assessment and share examples of where they’d like to see change happen.

From the initial synthesis of comments, we identified opportunities for change across many areas of the council. Overall we engaged 300+ staff, running five maturity workshops, four show and tells and one partner’s workshop.


Building the roadmap

From these findings, we qualified and prioritised opportunity areas into a roadmap using data, interviews, observation and journey mapping. Working with staff and partners we developed a roadmap which identifies the best places to start the modernisation programme:

  • organisation culture: prioritisation, staff time and decision-making
  • tools we work with: multiple non-integrated systems, investment in hardware and software, ongoing training and technical support and continued learning and development
  • citizen experience and how our work manifests: disjointed resident experience

The purpose of the roadmap is to create a structured approach to addressing the challenges identified through the maturity assessment. The roadmap will enable the council to move up the maturity scale, placing resident outcomes at the heart of the design of services and establishing a culture which strives for continuous, incremental improvement.

The challenges highlighted were core structural and processes issues that impact on the operation of the whole organisation. In addressing these challenges the ambition is to rethink the shape and structure of the council. Trafford can then deliver effectively for residents, businesses and partners across the borough.

Delivering the roadmap

The roadmap is organised into 4 strands including governance, data and insights, contracts and partnerships and processes. Each of the prioritised strands will run between 2.5 to 4 months, depending on the complexity of the work being done.


Achieving our ambition for good governance across Trafford means that delivering services feels both flexible and well supported. This strand will focus on recruitment and changes to governance structures and processes around recruitment that can save time and money. Changes to the governance processes will also centre around the renewal of contracts to improve cost-effectiveness, outcomes and relationships.

Data and insights

Effective data sharing across Trafford should result in commissioning and delivering effective, responsive services meeting the changing needs of citizens. Better use of data and insights will improve the quality of services for victims of domestic abuse as well as access to further education for those who most need it.

Contracts and partnerships

Great partnerships should mean higher quality, better value and more responsive services. Contracts are the mechanism which can either constrain or enable this way of working.


Good processes at Trafford will mean citizens have a clear, seamless experience and teams are able to work together effectively. We’ll be looking at new approaches to process and reduce unpaid care bills as well as improving rates of payment for council tax and business rates.

This is an ongoing project, and we’ll be updating with developments and results when they happen.

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