Our financial strategy
We aim to maintain a sustainable financial position over the course of the three year planning period, delivering significant savings each year.
It is our intention to keep council tax at affordable levels - with no increase in 2014/15 and increases of a maximum of 2% for 2015/16 and 2016/17 – and focus our limited resources on activities which contribute most to improved outcomes for local people.
We have identified four main strategic approaches to help us achieve these goals:
- Aligning resources to key service priorities - we will continue to review all of our operations with the objective of ensuring that resources are aligned to the delivery of our priorities, which are: improve health and wellbeing, managed growth, build stronger communities and deliver value.
- Improving efficiency and value for money - staffing costs account for approximately one half of our total budget and we will not achieve the savings we are required to make without further reductions in staffing. We will also examine the potential to generate further savings from better use of our assets, including efficiencies within the services provided from these assets.
- Exploiting shared service and partnership opportunities - innovative ways of working such as partnerships and shared service delivery often provide excellent value for money. We will need to sustain and build upon the success that we have already achieved to deliver priorities through shared services and partnership working. A significant proportion of our activities are now partly or wholly delivered through partner organisations, including environment services, highway maintenance and social housing. Further areas are likely to follow. We are part of the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) which was created to increase economic output, create jobs and stimulate growth and investment across the area. As part of this, we are actively seeking to take forward the UK Central project. We also have close working relationships with Coventry and Warwickshire Councils, particularly in relation to adult social care, children’s services, assets and procurement.
- Identifying and optimising income opportunities - our fees and charges are reviewed each year. Some of the factors taken into account when making charging decisions include whether the service is statutory; legal restrictions on charging; the service objectives and how it contributes to our outcomes. We also look at demand for the service, competition, benchmarking comparisons, information from service users and stakeholders, and the impact of charging decisions. As a general rule, fees and charges increase at least in line with inflation, perhaps more. Any additional income generated will be built into our medium term savings plans.
Download our medium term financial strategy
Download the Council plan 2014 - 2020
Download Solihull People and Place (an analysis of the demography and population of the borough)
Download State of the Borough (a statistical snapshot of Solihull)
Download One Borough - an equal chance for all (our sustainable community strategy)