The council’s care service to adults in Croydon has been praised for its “transparency and know-how” following a peer review by senior counterparts from across the capital.
The Association of the Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) visited the council for three days in late June to review its work and offer recommendations. Areas focused on included how services are commissioned, social work practice, performance, budgeting and partnerships.
Unlike an Ofsted visit, a peer review is not a statutory inspection that reports back to Government but helps identify which parts of the service are run well and where improvements are needed.
During the visit the ADASS peer reviewers, all of whom hold senior positions at other London councils, interviewed adult social care service users, frontline staff, managers and senior leadership, and observed how staff did their day-to-day work.
Findings from the ADASS report, which will be discussed at the next meeting of the Full Council on Monday 9 July, included:
• The council is open, flexible, cost-conscious and transparent
• It has vision, ambition, enthusiasm and know-how
• The commissioning of services with providers is strong and collaborative
• Residents feel engaged
• The One Croydon Alliance could be extended to under-65s’ care
• Staff need extra capacity
• More work is needed on working out the full cost of care
Lead reviewer Aileen Buckton, who is also an executive director at Lewisham Council, said: “We were impressed by the commitment and know-how of Croydon’s adult social care staff, and how closely they worked with partners to serve local residents. Their transparency and vision is clear at all levels. This is allowing them to deliver good results, including through the One Croydon Alliance. Overall, Croydon should continue what they are doing because it’s clearly working.”
“The visiting ADASS team are vastly experienced in the social care field, so it’s great for our staff and the people we care for that this valuable review was very positive.
“We’ll now use this as a springboard to deliver further improvements, starting with an action plan and working with health and voluntary partners to widen our successful One Croydon Alliance to help even more people.”
Councillor Jane Avis, cabinet member for families, health and social care