The Director Strategy,
Communications and Customer Services introduced the report and
stated that this covered the first quarter of 2020/21 from April to
June, which was during the height of national lockdown and the
COVID pandemic. She stated that services had been impacted by the
lockdown measures both directly and indirectly, and included some
services stopping completely. She highlighted that 66% of key
performance indicators (KPIs) still hit their targets, although
this was down from 74% between April-June 2019 and the 2020/21 end
of year figures. She drew Members attention to point 3.6 of the
report which described which services had been impacted and
commentary surrounding any mitigation. She outlined the current
positon as some services had now resumed, but some services would
see a longer-term impact, which would continue to be monitored and
mitigation sought. She summarised and stated that the report also
contained the 2019/20 end of year summary, although the main focus
was 2020/21 Quarter 1 and the COVID impact.
The Chair opened debate and thanked all Thurrock Council staff for their hard work in continuing to deliver services wherever possible during the pandemic, even during difficult circumstances and severe limitations. He stated that a large proportion of KPIs had been impacted by COVID and felt that no firm conclusions could be drawn from the data. He asked if there were any services whose missed target was not related to COVID. The Director Strategy, Communications and Customer Services replied that the team were focussing on KPIs which had been below target at end of year 2019/20, but potential mitigation to improve these services might not have happened because of the pandemic. She gave the example of waste collection as the Waste Management Working Group had achieved significant work that had not been implemented yet because of the pandemic. She stated that she hoped to see immediate improvement in some KPIs in quarter 2. The Chair highlighted page 41 of the agenda and asked if the proportion of household waste collected and recycled had increased during the lockdown, as more people worked and stayed at home. Councillor Ralph, as a member of the Waste Management Group, replied that the proportion of waste had dramatically increased due to people working from home and doing more shopping, and waste collectors had described it as ‘Christmas everyday’. He mentioned that before the lockdown waste collection trucks would complete one shift before needing to go to Bywaters to empty their trucks, but were now having to drive to Bywaters twice during a shift. Councillor Ralph thanked the waste collection staff for their hard work during this difficult period, in particular his local waste collector Paddy who had worked very hard and deserved recognition.
Councillor Duffin stated that even though there had been a pandemic, there was still numerous KPIs which had met their target, including the KPI regarding apprenticeships. He felt pleased to see that there were clear route to greens for KPIs which had not met their target. Councillor Hooper echoed Councillor Duffin’s comments and added that because of COVID it was difficult to judge the KPIs this quarter. The Chair agreed and added that some KPIs such as street cleanliness would have improved due to the pandemic too. He summarised and stated that the Committee would continue to monitor the KPIs throughout the coming year to be able to accurately judge the longer-term impact that COVID may have had on some services.
1. Noted and commented upon the performance of the key corporate performance indicators, in particular those areas which are off target, and the impact of COVID-19;
2. Identified any areas which require additional consideration;
3. Noted the end of year outturns 2019/20.