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Executive Summary (including Issues for the Future)



State of the Region



Strategic Priorities and Key Organisational Issues



Key Activities



Corporate Performance Indicators



Financial Performance



Performance Monitoring



Risk Management


Introduction This report provides an assessment of NWDA activity and performance during the first six months of the 2005/06 financial year. It provides an analysis of progress made against the Strategic Priorities and the Key Activities of the NWDA 2005/06 Business Plan. As well as a narrative breakdown of achievements within the period against each Key Activity, the report provides a breakdown of outputs achieved against the new Tasking Indicators together with case studies of Strategic Added Value (SAV). Strategic Added Value is a relatively new concept in RDA performance management and is a means of capturing the impact of the Agency’s strategic role (policy making, leadership, influencing, facilitating and co-ordinating), which, together with programme investments, is how we drive the delivery of the Regional Economic Strategy. The SAV case studies are consistently structured to describe the rationale for the action, what the activity has been and how the beneficial impact of the activity has been or will be evaluated.


A. Executive Summary Key Achievements: •

Regional Economic Strategy – The three month consultation period on the revised RES was successfully completed following over ninety supporting events and with the Agency receiving 250 written responses. The final version of the revised RES was considered by the Board in November 2005.

Aligning key strategies – Work to align the Regional Economic Strategy, the Regional Spatial Strategy and the Regional Housing Strategy has continued and has centered on the three key themes of jobs, houses and access using where possible a common evidence base to ensure that the three strategies will be mutually supportive. All three documents will be subject to revision during the course of 2005 and 2006.

Northern Way Growth Strategy - The Business Plan was launched in June, with the three investment priorities being led by the Agency: Employment, Skills and Knowledge.

Mann Island, Liverpool - Plans were approved for the development of the Mann Island site in Liverpool, one of the most important sites on the waterfront and at the core of the World Heritage Site.

New Urban Regeneration Companies - Boards have been appointed and are now operational for both new URCs in Blackpool and Central Salford.

Regional Skills Partnership (RSP) - The new North West RSP was formally established, with a structure comprising Board, Executive Team and wider Partners Action Group.

University of Cumbria – The Board received details of a proposal for the creation of a University of Cumbria, which would be located in Carlisle. Discussions with partners are ongoing.

Organisational Issues: •

Investors in People - The Agency was officially awarded the Investors in People Standard (iiP) in July.

Systems And Process Improvement Programme (SAPIP) - Roll out of a new Single Programme process and project management framework will begin in Quarter 3 following a successful development phase. A Programme Office has been established to deliver SAPIP and support programme and project management on an ongoing basis.

Enterprise, Innovation and Skills (EIS) Restructure - The Agency completed a restructuring of the EIS directorate. The review was undertaken in order to establish clear routes from strategy through to delivery, and to provide clarity both internally and externally of roles, responsibilities and accountabilities.

Development and Partnerships Review – A restructuring of the Development and Partnerships directorate was announced and will be undertaken in the second half of the year.


Financial Performance: •

Expenditure - Half year expenditure was £175m, 80% of the budget for the period and 37% of the annual budget. This is slightly lower than the proportion of expenditure at the same stage of 2004/05 (38.9%). However, the Agency is forecasting annual out-turn in line with the budget.

Output Performance: •

Output Performance - During the first half of the year 5,000 jobs were created or safeguarded, 4,000 people assisted to get a job, 1,000 businesses created/attracted to the region, 6,200 businesses assisted, and 2,600 people assisted in their skills development. Current forecasts for the year indicate that seven of ten output targets will be met. The Agency is confident that improved reporting in the second half of the year will result in all ten target being achieved.

Issues for Future Consideration We consider that we have made good progress in the following areas: •

Development of a new RES on an inclusive, regional basis, which is clearly aligned with other key regional strategies. The RES is focussed and prioritised. It has positive buy in from regional partners.

Our Investment Plan is closely aligned with the RES.

Our internal controls and project management arrangements are robust.

We have met our targets in previous years and are confident that we will meet our 2005/06 targets.

We have established a strong evidence base for policy development and decision making.

There are areas we consider are in need of improvement and these will feature in our IPA Improvement Plan. They are: •

Clarifying and building stronger relationships with our Sub-Regional Partnerships.

Improving our internal policy co-ordination. This will include embedding the new RES within our corporate culture.

Enhancing our evaluation arrangements for programmes and projects.

A clearer approach to continuous professional development with enhanced training for our staff.


B. State of the Region The State of the Region is a brief economic background summary to the regional economic activities being reported in Sections C and D. Headlines: •

Activity rates - the number of people participating in the regional economy - have risen, against the national trend. In the 12 months ending May 2005, the proportion of the working age population who were economically active in the Northwest was 77%, slightly below the average for Great Britain - 78.7%. However, the gap is closing and over the last three years the activity rate in the Northwest has risen by 0.9%. In comparison the rate across Great Britain was unchanged.

Northwest manufacturing recovery loses steam. The output gap within the region is mainly due to low productivity, especially in services. Following an upbeat previous survey for North West manufacturing, results in the latest survey have been disappointing. A balance of just 3% of manufacturers reported growth in domestic sales, down from 19% in the previously. Similarly, although less extreme is the service sector, where a balance of just 18% of service sector respondents reported growth in home sales, down from 25%. This downturn is not just restricted to manufacturing, with the service sector being hit by slow consumer spending and the housing market slow down. Another concern for manufacturing is in prices. Survey1 respondents expect them to rise as a result of the high cost of crude oil, other raw materials, along with other global factors such as the Iraqi war and hurricanes in America.

Employment holding up. Latest figures from the Regional Economic Forecasting Panel 2 show a rise in the Northwest employment rate up to 73.6% (year to Feb 2005) from 72.8% (year to Feb 2004).

Living standards. Comparing the Northwest to the UK, the gap in living standards (as measured by ‘disposable income per head’) is narrower than the gap in economic performance (as measured by ‘GVA per head’), 8% compared to 10%. Average consumer prices in the Northwest were some 4% below those in the UK as a whole (2004). The housing element in this is even more marked, 11% below the level last year, despite recent house price increases in the region.

Sources: 1 North West Chambers of Commerce Quarterly Economic Survey sponsored by the Northwest Development Agency. 2 Regional Economic Forecasting Panel – August 2005.


C. Strategic Priorities and Key Organisational Issues A summary of progress against the strategic priorities identified in the Agency’s Business Plan is set out below. •

Regional Housing Strategy - The Agency contributed to the production of the Regional Housing Strategy by highlighting the role that housing plays in supporting economic growth and delivering regeneration. The Strategy was submitted to Ministers at the end of June 2005.

Regional Assembly - The Agency provided contributions to the Regional Reviews work programme for 2005/06, and played a leading role in the Regional Review Select Committee hearing on Sub Regional Partnerships on 6th June.

Systems And Process Improvement Programme (SAPIP) - The Agency has continued its cross-Agency review of its project processes and systems. Excellent progress has been made against plan and the Agency is on target to start roll out of the new Single Programme process and project management framework, to be supported by improved systems and training, in Quarter 3. Everyone requiring training to support his or her Agency job roles has signed up. Roll out will be completed by March 2006. A Programme Office has been established to deliver SAPIP and support programme and project management on an ongoing basis.

Strategic Responsibility for Tourism - The English Regions Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) report was launched. A TSA seeks to understand contributions to the economy of tourism to aid strategic economic planning. Following recommendations made in the Tourism Cluster Study, a Tourism Development Group was set up that involves and engages all Tourist Boards.

Strategic priority activities featuring Strategic Added Value: •

Regional Economic Strategy - The three month consultation period on the revised RES was completed in September. 250 written responses were received by the Agency and 91 events were staged in support of the process. An Economic Issues Paper and a Strategic Environmental Assessment supported the consultation whilst a Regional Economic Strategy Advisory Group helped to ensure effective regional engagement. The final version of the revised RES is to be considered by the Board in November 2005. (For a full case study see below.)

Sub Regional Partnerships - A generic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed with three of the five Sub Regional Partnerships: Greater Manchester, Cheshire & Warrington, and Merseyside. The MoUs reinforce shared commitment and partnership in driving forward economic development and regeneration. The Partnerships champion greater cohesion of existing strategies, polices and programmes at regional and sub-regional level. The MoU with Lancashire is due to be signed by the end March 2006. The signing of the Cumbria MoU will follow the agreement of the Cumbria Vision Business Plan in early January 2006. SRPs have been fully involved in the RES Advisory Group and will continue to be engaged through the Action Planning process.


• •

Business Link Services - A full review of the Business Support and Business Link service in the region started in August, with recommendations expected to be considered by the NWDA Board in January 2006. Northern Way Growth Strategy (NWGS) - The Business Plan was launched in June, with the focus now on implementation. Progress is being made on investment priorities being led by the Agency: Employment, Skills and Knowledge as well as the Northern Leadership Academy. In June 2005, three Northwest City Region Development Programmes were published alongside the NWGS Business Plan.

Strategic Added Value Case Study: Consultation and Development of new Regional Economic Strategy (RES) A. Rationale: The NWDA is committed to reviewing its RES during 2005 for a 2006 launch. The RES is a key strategic document for Northwest England, it drives not only the activity of the NWDA, but also that of key partners within the Northwest. The NWDA has the responsibility to lead the consultation and review. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

March 2005 - NWDA makes Economic Issues Paper available. May 2005 - Economic Analysis available. June 2005 - Draft RES produced by NWDA. July to Sept 2005 - Public consultation. November 2005 - Finalised RES submitted to Board. Nov/Dec 2005 - Planned: Final RES to be submitted to Ministers.

Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• •

Leading regional partners through the process of creating a strategic document that will form the basis for partner activity and investment over the next three years. The NWDA commissioned and produced an Economic Analysis to support the RES consultation, which has acted as a catalyst for debate and agreement on regional economic performance.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

• •

An external RES Advisory Group was set up by the NWDA to ensure effective regional engagement. Led by the Agency, the Group met at monthly and represented a cross-regional range of strategic interests. Example partners include CBI, GONW and English Nature. Key drivers for the RES were its alignment to the major strategic plans already running in the region such as: the emerging Regional Spatial Strategy, Regional Housing Strategy, the Northern Way Growth Strategy and the City Region Development Programmes. The added value demonstrated by the Agency was to ensure that all these plans were considered and aligned using mechanisms such as the Sub Regional Partnerships.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

• • •

NWDA developed an inventory of regional interests and policies/strategies in order to consult the right people, creating a source of intelligence for the consultation and, in the future, implementation. With over ninety consultation events held, the Agency sought the expertise, advice and influence of all key strategic players - raising all the economic issues that the region faces. 250 written responses provided a platform for evidence and intelligence based policy in the RES.

C. Evaluation: For the RES review process:

• •

Attendees provided feedback on the effectiveness of consultation events, which was used to improve subsequent events. All responses were analysed by the NWDA Research Team to examine and report on findings using sophisticated research techniques.


• •

Using the RES Advisory Group and the NWDA Board, the draft RES will be subject to detailed consideration before being proposed to Government. NWDA will work with partners to integrate RES actions into their business planning process and will lead on the development of monitoring in order that the region can report progress annually.

D. Key Activities BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT 1. Exploit the growth potential of business sectors •

Cluster Development Programme - Consultants have been appointed to carry out a strategic review of the cluster development programme to advise future direction and are due to report in November 2005.

Aerospace - The NWDA and BAE Systems launched a joint initiative aiming to sustain and maximise a world-class aerospace industry. At a ceremony attended by Rt Hon. Jack Straw MP, a review was announced of the long-term vision for the BAE Systems Samlesbury site, which could lead to the development of the site into a Regional Aerospace Business Park.

Automotive - The NWDA and the Northwest Automotive Alliance (NAA) hosted a reception at the House of Commons showcasing the region’s automotive industry. A unique opportunity to highlight the region’s key strengths and capabilities to national MPs and decision makers.

National Bio Manufacturing Centre - The construction of the facility is now 95% complete. The Centre is a state of the art facility that will develop and manufacture new medicines.

Biotechnology: The Access Fund - The NWDA announced the launch of a pioneering £2.7m fund to help companies in the biotechnology sector. The Fund will provide grant support for companies, enabling them to access the services of the National Bio Manufacturing Centre.

Nuclear Strategy - Together with regional partners the NWDA has developed a strategy of how public sector bodies can best support the nuclear sector in the NW including: restructuring of the supply chain, changing skills needs, research and technical skills.

BBC - NWDA is working closely with the BBC to put together a regional package of support to underpin its relocation of production facilities from London to Greater Manchester and deliver maximum impact for the Northwest. Jobs will be transferred from London with the knock on effect of the creation of further jobs within media and related industries across the North of England, generating economic activity valued at £750m. NWDA is engaging with Manchester and Salford City Councils to find a suitable location and site for the new facilities. Of more strategic significance, the relocation creates an opportunity to develop the region’s media/cultural/digital sector further. The Agency is pursuing a broad based strategy in this regard to create a Media Zone around the new facilities which will develop supply chains through a Media Centre of Excellence and address specific opportunities for clustering activity, business support and development, skills provision, HE/FE links and increased R&D activity.


2. Improve the competitiveness and productivity of businesses •

Selective Finance for Investment - 59 grant offers were made with a total value of £8.3m, which is expected to lead to private sector capital expenditure of £62m and the creation/safeguarding of over 1,600 jobs.

Inward Investment - A two-year extension of the US collaboration for the North of England project was agreed with Yorkshire Forward and One North East, and a new Chicago HQ was established. To date the NWDA has been involved in 11 successful inward investment projects, which will create 760 new jobs and 180 existing jobs. Key inward investment marketing events held so far this year include the Paris Airshow (with Lancashire Economic Partnership), Bio 2005 (with Cheshire & Warrington Economic Alliance) and Call Centre Expo (with Call NW and sub regional partners).

Strategic Companies - The Agency helped to co-ordinate the response to difficulties at a number of large companies over the first half of the year, including the establishment of Workington Vision as a response to the proposed closure of the Corus Steelworks. There is ongoing contact being made with United Biscuits where Agency funding will assist the company in securing the long-term future of the McVities factory in Carlisle following damage caused by the floods earlier in the year.

Supply chains - The Rover Cars Recovery Programme concluded with 45 supplier companies contacted and/or assisted, thus drastically reducing the impact of the Rover closure on the region. A project proposal for nuclear decommissioning supply chain support in West Cumbria has been developed by West Cumbria Development Agency. Other partners include Westlakes Renaissance and Business Link Cumbria. This project is due to start in October 2005 and run for 12 months.

NW Business Investment Scheme - £5.6m has been invested by the scheme, unlocking £51.6m of further private investment.

NW Seed Fund - £156k was invested in 4 companies levering £356k other investment.

RisingStars Growth Fund - To date, £11m has been committed to 29 companies, which has led to additional investment of £7.4m. Investments of approaching £500k in high growth technology businesses to prove concepts and take to commercialisation and growth have been made.

Northwest Equity Fund - 49 investments totalling £7.9m have been made in 25 companies. This is a £35.5m investment fund supported by the Dti.

TEChINVEST - 20 companies received specialist management assistance and 2 investors meetings were held for 70 investors.

3. Develop and exploit the region’s knowledge base


North West Laser Engineering Consortium (NWLEC) - A new strategic alliance between the Universities of Liverpool and Manchester was announced to deliver a £2.5 million scheme, funded by the NWDA, which produces state of the art equipment for laser processing and will establish the Northwest as the leading region for laser capabilities.

Strategic Added Value Case Study Example: Northern Way – Knowledge Investment Priorities A. Rationale: The NWDA is lead RDA for the Northern Way Growth Strategy (NWGS) knowledge investment priorities. The aim is to build on the North’s strong knowledge base and technology strengths, with the intention to push for increasing expenditure on research and development. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Growth Strategy Report published. Commence a Northern Science and Industry Initiative. Engagement with 3 northern Science Councils to develop World Class Research Centres. Engagement with northern University Associations to develop Centres of Professional Excellence. Publication of Northern Way Growth Strategy Business Plan.

Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• • • •

NWDA’s support of NWGS facilitated the bringing together of the eight research intensive universities from across the North (N8) as a strategic grouping to identify academic research strengths. NWDA also led the associated work to identify the North’s complementary industrial strengths and the strategic collaboration of the 3 Science and Industry Councils. NWDA facilitated pan Northern collaboration of the 3 University Associations to develop priorities for Centres of Professional Excellence as part of the overall Growth Strategy. Securing pan-Northern agreement to the priorities for extending the Knowledge Transfer Partnerships and developing key sectoral strengths.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

• •

The ongoing leadership by the NWDA of these investment priorities has achieved major results. The universities have set up the N8 Group which has since gone from strength to strength, appointing its’ own Director and already setting its own top 5 research priorities. In order to drive the creation of Centres of Professional Excellence, the NWDA has brought the 3 Northern Higher Education Associations together to collaborate on setting priorities - this ensures that decisions can be made expediently in a co-ordinated manner.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

Using Arthur D. Little research, the NWDA is gathering intelligence to develop the industrial groupings of disparately organised interests to ensure that there is synergy between academic and industrial strengths to drive forward productivity in the North.

C. Evaluation:

• • • •

Impact assessment. Membership/ Number of events/meetings. Achievement and delivery of milestones. Stakeholder survey.

The Joule Centre - The Centre is now formally contracted with Manchester University and activity will commence in October 2005. The Joule


Centre was set up with NWDA support as a body for supporting academic and industrial research into the area of sustainable energy generation. •

Innovative Actions - All projects are now completed with a final evaluation report having been submitted to the Agency. The programme supports ICT projects within hard to reach communities and SMEs.

Daresbury Science Park - The NWDA announced additional funding at Daresbury International Science and Technology Park is to support the Cockcroft Institute, the UK’s National Centre for Accelerator Science, which will be located at Daresbury. 11 companies are now in place in Daresbury Innovation Centre as part of the Agency’s aim to encourage enterprise through its business incubators.

GRAND - There continues to be a strong demand for this R&D grant, which the Agency inherited from the DTI in April 2005. £3.6m will be spent this year. The scheme provides grants to individuals and SMEs to research and develop technologically innovative products and processes.

Project Unity - The contract covering the Agency’s £35m contribution to Project Unity (merger of two Manchester universities) was completed.

REGENERATION 4. Deliver urban renaissance •

Cruise Liner Terminal, Liverpool - £7.1m from the Objective One programme and £9.9m from the NWDA has been approved to drive the construction of a new £19m cruise liner facility on the world famous Liverpool waterfront.

Mann Island, Liverpool - Plans were approved for the development of the Mann Island site in Liverpool, one of the most important sites on the waterfront and at the core of the World Heritage Site. Funding of £32.7m is to be provided to National Museums Liverpool for the development of the Museum of Liverpool (subject to DTI/Treasury approval), and a further £7.5m for a canal link.

Kings Waterfront, Liverpool - Work started on the construction of the arena, conference and exhibition facilities and mixed use development, a flagship project which is funded by Objective 1, English Partnerships, Liverpool City Council and a £15m NWDA grant.

Coastal Resorts - A vision for Morecambe was agreed between the Agency and Lancaster City Council to take forward the recommendations of A New Vision for Northwest Coastal Resorts.

Brownfield Land - In September 2005, the Agency announced a review of the current regional approach to land reclamation within the context of the revised Regional Economic Strategy. This review will enable the Agency to better assist English Partnerships in its work to produce a National Brownfield Land Strategy and respond to the initiatives under it as they emerge.

Housing Pathfinders – The Oldham/Rochdale and Newheartlands Pathfinders have submitted scheme updates to ODPM. The NWDA was heavily involved in their development to ensure alignment with emerging regional and sub-regional


economic priorities. Agreement with the Oldham/Rochdale Pathfinder to establish a Design Review Panel as a pilot. Particular Pathfinder developments include: o

Work began on the development of a shared economic/spatial framework for Oldham/Rochdale to be completed by November 2005.


Close liaison between the NWDA and the Manchester/Salford and Elevate Pathfinders will ensure that respective scheme updates are submitted in October 2005.

New Urban Regeneration Companies - Boards have been appointed and are now operational for both new URCs in Blackpool and Central Salford. The Chief Executive has now been recruited for ReBlackpool. Salford launched its Draft Vision and Regeneration Framework.

RENEW - Learning Networks have been established by RENEW (the Northwest Regeneration Centre of Excellence) for under-performing Local Strategic Partnerships in conjunction with GONW, and also to communicate the benefits of facilities such as the Centre for Construction Innovation.

6. Rural Renaissance •

Regional Rural Delivery Framework (RRDF) - NWDA has engaged with the development of the RRDF with senior representation on the newly formed Rural Priority Board and Rural Practitioners Group. The Agency is leading on the development of two emerging priorities within the framework: Economy and Service Provision.

Lancashire Rural Pathfinder (transfer of Countryside Agency Funds) - The Agency has worked with GONW and Lancashire rural partners in the testing of the delivery of services at local level. The NWDA has offered a financial contribution of £1.8m to develop Community Resource Centres capable of delivering 21st century services in rural localities.

Sustainable Food and Farming Strategy - Together with partners the Agency has instigated a Regional Progress Review to identify current levels of activity; explore any new directions; identify any gaps in coverage and ensure North West is on track to deliver against the Strategy.

REACT Initiative - At the recent REACT Steering Group meeting, the partnership reported the continuing support they provided for TNAs (Training Needs Analysis) identifying that ICT was still a key area for support. The support was to get businesses using ICT. Progress can also be reported on activities supported by additional funding under SSFF (Sustainable Farming and Food), with a lead taken on new skills for agriculture and land management, which has successfully led to farmer workshops on boundary management and nutrient management.

Rural Boards - The Lancashire and Cheshire Rural Boards are now well established. The Agency has secured observer status at both.

Market Towns - Schemes have been approved for North Allerdale, Penrith, and Padiham. Annual Performance Plans have been agreed for The Lakes Partnership, Neston, Egremont, Longtown, Garstang and Sandbach. Other progress includes:



Egremont Market Town - Funding of up to £1m granted by the Agency. The investment will enable the Egremont and Area Regeneration Partnership to develop and implement a wide range of projects focussed on creating a thriving economic base for the area.


Longtown - A further £1m was approved by NWDA for this programme, which will be delivered by the Longtown Market Town Initiative and supported by Carlisle City Council.


Keswick - The first British and Northwest rural town to succeed in setting up a Business Improvement District (BID). Keswick was identified as one of eight North West towns and cities backed by the NWDA pilot scheme.

6. Secure Economic Inclusion •

Voluntary and Community sector – The VCS have been actively brought into the Regional Economic Strategy consultation with a specially arranged event organised by the Agency. The NWDA has met VCS organisations such as Sefton CVS to foster closer working relationships. The Agency continues to support regional initiatives such as the developing GONW Change Up and Compact programmes.

9th Annual Ethnic Minority Business Conference - Business leaders, policymakers and academics attended this conference in September, focussing on business diversity, innovation and success. The conference was organised by De Montfort University in association with the NWDA.

‘Wealth Bringers’ Report – The report was published by Sustainability Northwest and commissioned by the NWDA. The report, which consulted with over 250 ethnic minority entrepreneurs who have established businesses in the Northwest, examined the contribution that ethnic minority businesses make to the region’s wealth and social cohesion.

Maximising NHS Construction development - St Helens and Knowsley NHS Trust secured as a pilot.

NW Community Loan Fund - 2 loans made totalling £45k which levered £347k. These are loans for social enterprises and charities.


Strategic Added Value Case Study Example: Blackpool URC Establishment A. Background: To establish the best way to tackle the problems faced in Blackpool, the ReBlackpool Urban Regeneration Company (URC) was initiated to create and deliver the town’s Masterplan and to ensure deprived communities benefit from the expected investment in leisure attractions. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date) :1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Blackpool Masterplan published. Public consultation driven by NWDA and partners. Submission of URC bid to the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. Recruitment of the ReBlackpool Board. Agree Capital Investment Plan.

Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• • • • •

The achievement of milestones 4 and 5 were achieved directly as a result of the Agency and its partners having delivered a well received plan bringing together all funders, partners and having had the URC agreed. The strategic influence from the Agency together with its catalytic activity to move forward the Masterplan’s zonal investment activities has guaranteed momentum and implementation. The Agency sponsored, negotiated and designed the Blackpool Masterplan with strategic partners to provide a strategic direction. The Blackpool Masterplan will act as a powerful catalyst for the creation of thousands of jobs and millions of pounds of inward investment. The ongoing implementation of the southern, central and northern gateway investments has guaranteed momentum. Together with Blackpool Unitary Authority the Agency brought together a team of high profile professionals to oversee zonal development plans and develop the URC submission.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

• •

The creation of the strategic Blackpool Masterplan brought funders together under a shared plan. By facilitating a wide public consultation the Agency is being able to bring Area forums, businesses and the media together into networks that support funded activities.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

• •

Through an international bidding and evidence gathering process – the Agency brought together the experience of Jerde (US bidder) and a UK angle in EDAW through facilitated long and short listing to provide the Masterplan for Blackpool that brought partners behind the development. The Casino Market Demand Study provided the intelligence and political will to support the commitment to attract the single regional casino to Blackpool.

D. Evaluation:

• • •

Agreements signed between partners for example the Capital Investment Plan. Area based evaluation. Impact assessments.


SKILLS AND EMPLOYMENT 5. Develop and maintain a healthy labour market •

Regional Skills Partnership (RSP) - The new North West RSP was formally established, with a structure comprising Board, Executive Team and wider Partners Action Group. In July 2005, Skills and Business priorities for the region were published by the Partnership. The RSP produced a comprehensive progress report in September 2005 for DfES. Led by various regional partners, the RSP continues to progress a number of themes through the 8 thematic workstreams, which are: o

14-19 Skills


HE Skills


National Employer Training Programme


Skills and Business Support Brokerage




Leadership and Management


Implementation Sector Skills Agreements


Working with Local Authorities.

RDA Lead Role in Skills - At the beginning of the period the Agency represented the RDAs in influencing the Skills White Paper working in turn closely with DfES, DTi, DWP and ODPM, making sure it was regionally specific and demand led.

University of Cumbria - A proposal is being drawn up for consideration, which if agreed with the NWDA Board and partners, would create a University of Cumbria. This University would be headquartered in Carlisle, using the existing premises of St Martin’s, Cumbria Institute for the Arts and UCLan. It would have three other campuses in Lancaster, Ambleside and, potentially, Penrith. The University would be responsible for a major distributed learning system based on the four FE Colleges and utilising the Life Long Learning Network concept. The West Cumbria Strategic Forum have been very positive and endorsed the University of Cumbria proposals.

Sector Skills and Productivity Alliances (SSPA) - All the SSPAs are now well established. A mechanism has been established with the Learning and Skills Councils to ensure the right representation on all SSPAs. Lead Directors are in place for all sectors. SSPAs now being firmly embedded in the RSP as the employer voice for sectors. All SSPAs are currently completing the SSPA/RSP prioritisation exercise identifying skills and productivity priorities. This data will be fed into the RSP Executive and regional prioritisation group so that mainstream funding can be aligned to meet the needs of employers.

National Nuclear Skills Academy - The Expression of Interest for the National Nuclear Skills Academy (NNSA) to become a National Skills Academy has been completed and submitted to Government.


Northern Way Growth Strategy - Skills - The NWDA is leading these two key investment priorities which includes a series of enhancements to the DWP Pathways to Work Pilots across the North - initially in Easington (contract let) and Knowsley (contract out to tender). In addition, working with One North East and Yorkshire Forward and the Learning and Skills Councils, proposals to fund second level 2 and 3 NVQ qualifications are being developed.

Leadership - Lancaster University Management School has launched a new leadership centre to pioneer research, and develop the leaders of the future. Based in Lancaster University’s world-class Management School, the Leadership Centre is housed in a £10 million building, which was co-funded by the NWDA.

Strategic Added Value Case Study Example: Developing a Regional Skills Partnership A. Background and aims: A vital progression and action for the NWDA was to lead the setting up and implementation of a Northwest Regional Skills Partnership (RSP). The purpose of the RSP is to provide a forum for the key skills funding partners to help ensure that they are working collaboratively to meet the challenges set out in the skills strategy. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date) :1. North West RSP was established, comprising a Board, Executive Team and wider Partners Action Group. 2. Project Aspire and Regeneris Research Report used to provide evidence base for priority setting. 3. Agreement and setting of 15 Priorities for Action. 4. Publishing of NW Regional Skills Partnership Priorities for Action. 5. Comprehensive Progress Report sent to DfES. Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• •

The NWDA had a driving role in the development and management of the 19 Sector Skills and Productivity Alliances on whose work the RSP is building. In developing the RSP priorities in conjunction with the simultaneous review of the Regional Economic Strategy, the NWDA is ensuring that there is complete alignment between the two.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

• •

It was vital that the NWDA was able to bring together the main regional players: RDA, JobCentrePlus, LSC, Business Links and the Skills for Business network. This was necessary to make sure that the needs of regional employers were the starting point for influencing and planning the supply of skills, now and in the future. The joint work is preventing duplication, and simplifying the understanding of activity for both employers and citizens. Decisions can now be made quicker and in line with regional strategy. Failure to properly design and implement the RSP in a strategic manner would have led to bilateral decisions being made between the partners rather than consensual ones between all, thus hindering synergy across all partners and knowledge sets.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

The NWDA commissioned (2003/4) Project Aspire, a major skills data collection exercise interviewing 10,000 businesses and 6,000 citizens to help draw an evidence base for action. The RSP also asked consultants Regeneris to support the RSP priorities setting with a major research report. Using this evidence base, the NWDA has influenced the debate on regional priorities, raising the profile of key strategic issues: worklessness, inactivity in the regional economy and basic skills, productivity through skills development in growth areas and the development of NVQ L2/3/4.

C. Evaluation:


In line with the milestones for this activity the following methodologies are being considered:

• • •

It is planned for about 20 performance indicators to be attached to the recommended actions. Demonstrable link to productivity and Gross Value Added through an evidence base. Alignment of funding regimes and business cycles – evidenced by the ability to have complementary key strategic documents and action plans.

INFRASTRUCTURE 6. Develop the strategic transport, communication and economic infrastructure •

Regional Spatial Strategy (RSS) - The Agency made direct inputs to RSS development concerning Regional Transport Strategy objectives and the spatial development framework. The Agency also contributed to various studies undertaken by the Regional Assembly to support the RSS process including the Regional Employment Land Study and the Household Growth Estimates Study. The Agency also supported the preparation of the Interim Draft RSS through organising joint workshop sessions, assisting in the development of the evidence base, preparing draft policies for discussion and providing informal comments on emerging policies.

Regional ICT Strategy - Following detailed review and consultation in 2004/5, a revised NW ICT Strategy was launched formally at the NWDA AGM in September 2005 and now sits as the official policy document on ICT for the Region. Key examples of activity during the period include: o

Project ACCESS - The infrastructure phase of this £20m project is now almost completed with all 118 BT exchanges in Cumbria now enabled with broadband. A high bandwidth optical fibre loop has been installed, which when connected to all 38 wireless base stations in October, will enable Cumbria with the most advanced telecommunications platform for any rural sub region in the UK.


Merseybroadband - Merseybroadband has hit its key target of increasing Greater Merseyside's broadband take-up eight months ahead of its target. By July, broadband take-up in Merseyside and Halton had reached 15.3%, up from 8.8% in August 2004. The NWDA and Objective 1 fund MerseyBroadband.

Ports - The Agency completed a transport study providing an assessment of the economic trends affecting Northwest ports and to assess the implications of these trends in terms of port land use requirements. The key propositions were a continuing role for Heysham and opportunities for significant growth at the ports of Birkenhead and Liverpool. The need to secure appropriate port development land and improved surface access at Heysham and Liverpool, both of which are predicted to have land availability constraints by 2025, was identified. This is now being pursued with relevant partners.

Business Improvement Districts (BIDS) - The Agency hosted a regional BIDS forum in September to review progress and share best practice.

Casino Market Demand Assessment - The Assessment was published by the Agency jointly with Government Office and the Regional Assembly to provide


an independent assessment of the demand and capacity for regional casinos in the region. •

Environmental Sustainability - The 2004/05 external environmental audit of the Agency commenced in May and was completed in July 2005. A summary of the Audit report will go to the Board Environment Sub-committee in October 2005. Other developments during the period include: o

ERM were contracted to update the Environmental Economy of NW study.


NWDA has applied for £1.3m additional BREW funding for 2006/7. Confirmation of Year 2 BREW funding is expected in November 2005.


Tender specifications are being raised for a ‘wider waste strategy’ for the region and a communications strategy for the regional BREW programme.

Regional Stakeholders Environment Conference - On 2nd June, Environmental awareness was championed by the NWDA. Led by NWDA Board Member and Environment Sub Committee chair, Joe Dwek, the conference was an opportunity for key regional stakeholders to review and comment upon key areas of the NWDA’s activity within the environmental agenda.

7. Ensure the availability of a balanced portfolio of employment sites •

Kingsway, Rochdale - Work commenced on the main infrastructure works at Kingsway Business Park including the remodelling of Junction 21 of the M62. The 170-hectare business park is expected to generate over 7,000 new jobs.

Knowsley Business Park Development - Derelict land at the heart of Knowsley Industrial Estate will be transformed into a prestigious business park creating more than 300 jobs - after £4m of public sector funding was approved. Grants from the NWDA (£1.3m) and Objective One (£2.8m) have been secured to develop infrastructure and the first phase of development.

Agecroft Commerce Park - The final phase of works in Pendlebury, Salford is now underway, and will lead to the creation of over 600 jobs. The regeneration of this former colliery site is being led by the NWDA.

Planning Applications - The Agency was consulted on 10 planning applications. All responses submitted within the statutory timescale. In addition, the Agency provided comments on 32 Local Development Documents and 2 Local Transport Plans.


Strategic Added Value Case Study: The creation of City Region Development Programmes (CRDPs) A. Background and aims: City Region is the term used to refer to the areas of economic influence of cities. The NWDA and partners need to understand how City Regions work and their impact on the economy. With this knowledge and the understanding on how to effect change, the NWDA and partners will be in a better position to ensure the city regions fulfil their growth potential. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Eight city-regions across the North of England were invited to prepare CRDPs. The NWDA worked directly with Sub Regional Partnerships (SRPs) to develop the Northwest CRDPs. The evidence base set for each City Region to inform the CRDP. In June 2005, the 3 Northwest CRDPs were published alongside the Northern Way Growth Strategy Business Plan. The NWDA set out with the Northern Way Secretariat, the next steps for development of CRDP priorities and strengthening the evidence base.

Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• •

Creation of the CRDPs was a key catalyst to delivering the contribution of our cities to the Northern Way Growth Strategy, developing a consensus to tackle productivity, worklessness and other issues in a coherent and collaborative way. Without the NWDA’s strategic input, the collaboration is unlikely to have happened - and independent, separate strategies would have been put forward.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

• •

The NWDA brought the developing SRPs together to collaborate on the CRDPs, which led to a strong working relationship between Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester and Cheshire and Warrington. The NWDA brought together, for the first time, ‘non-traditional’ partners such as Liverpool/West Lancashire local authority district and North Wales and Manchester involving High Peak local authority district. The NWDA worked specifically with GONW and NWRA to ensure a linkage to the Regional Spatial Strategy - a failure to do so would have rendered the Northern Way initiative very difficult to develop and implement in this region.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

In addition to the evidence gathering and analysis that the partners undertook the NWDA is currently working to identify evidence gaps and co-ordinate future evidence gathering - to make sure the City Regions continue to accurately support the Northern Way and the regions input to the Comprehensive Spending Review 2007.

C. Evaluation:

• •

Ongoing data monitoring reviews of each CRDP economic position. Monitoring of workstream activity under the Northern Way Growth Strategy will help evaluate the impact of each CRDP, and progress monitoring of each priority will take place.


IMAGE 8. Develop and market the region’s image •

Promote the region to national and international business sectors – Activities to highlight the region’s growth sectors amongst business leaders and opinion formers has included: o

Inward investment - A Northern Way Inward Investment Campaign Company was appointed. A US based campaign to generate investment leads is being finalised for October launch.


Music - The ‘In the City’ Music Festival and International Conference was held in Manchester, attracting 2,500 industry professionals.


Aerospace - A significant presence at the Paris International Airshow, which profiled 25 suppliers from the region.


Film and television - The NWDA announce a further investment of £1 million to boost independent film and television production throughout England’s Northwest. The Agency confirmed the second stage of funding for the Regional Attraction Fund (RAF).

Tourism Marketing Programme - During the period several activities have been delivered that relate directly to the function of the Tourism Marketing Framework which sets the context for Agency intervention: Production of a 16-page travel supplement published in The Sunday

o Times.


The “50 Fantastic Walks in England’s Northwest” publication, created in partnership with ITV Granada.


The 2005 Gardens Campaign was launched aiming to attract 500,000 visitors.


200 industry professionals attended the second Regional Tourism Conference on 5th August 2005 at Rheged in Penrith, Cumbria.


The 2005 Manchester Tourism Awards were organised by Marketing Manchester, the Tourist Board for Greater Manchester, and supported by the NWDA.

Tourism - Funding and delivery agreements have been reached with each Tourist Board. Following publication of a tourism cluster study, a tourism development group has been set up that involves all Tourist Boards and which is focussed on improving the performance of the tourism industry. Other activities include: o

Joint work with ONE on the development of a new company to manage Hadrian’s Wall (now approved by DTI).



A regional tourism research website was launched.


Funding of £450,000 has been provided to the Cumbria Tourist Board to support a move to new premises.


An RDA Tourist Leads Group was formally constituted with the NWDA’s James Berresford elected as chair.


Work commenced on development of a regional business tourism strategy and a visitor information strategy.

Major Events Strategy - 10 major events have been supported during the six month period against an annual target of 12. Attendance at Agency Events was 4,900 against an annual target of 8,000. The Agency has organised and supported a series of key events such as the England’s Northwest TV and Film Showcase organised in London to highlight the work of the Agency and regional strengths in creative industries. Major events won include the Liverpool bid for the 2008 World Firefighters games. Other important events include: o

The Tour of Britain, Salford Triathlon and the RHS Tatton Flower Show, which brought eight travel writers to the region.


Manchester’s campaign to reduce CO2 (launched August 26th) emissions across the City and the Northwest Business Environment Awards.


Fringe events (with Yorkshire Forward and One North East) at TUC, Liberal Democrat Conference, Conservative Conference (in October) and the Labour Party Conference.

Support for Liverpool as European Capital of Culture - A joint marketing planning process is being facilitated by the Agency between The Mersey Partnership and Capital of Culture. The NWDA has signed a multi-million pound sponsorship deal with the Liverpool Culture Company. The Company launched its Delivery Plan for 2008 in London at a special reception at the House of Commons. The Agency will be investing £2m over the next 4 years to assist the Capital of Culture Company with the delivery of its cultural programme.

Media Coverage - Total articles broadcast were 2,555 with 55% generated coverage, and an equivalent advertising value of £3.16m.

Target MPs, MEP’s, Ministers and civil servants with key regional and national policy briefs - The Agency held a reception in the House of Commons to promote the region’s Bio-technology cluster which was attended by over 100 MPs. Civil servants and business representatives attended to meet regional companies.

Flood-affected areas - John Prescott visited Carlisle and the floodaffected areas, meeting local stakeholders and representatives of the NWDA and Cumbria Vision.

Publications - Productions included issue 7 of the Agency’s corporate magazine, the Annual Review, the draft RES and a Business Insider guide to the Tourism Industry.


Web sites - There have been 1.15m page impressions on (annual target of 1.8m) and 895,000 on and (annual target of 2.2m) to the end of Quarter 2.

World Museum, Liverpool - Formerly Liverpool Museum, this visitor attraction opened to the public in April 2005. The massive £35m project to expand galleries and improve facilities was funded through the Heritage Lottery Fund (£32m), EU Objective One (£3.6m) and the NWDA (£1.9m).

Strategic Added Value Case Study Example: Implementing a Tourism Marketing Framework A. Background and Aims: The Tourism Marketing Framework aims to set out the context for Agency intervention. It directly influences public investment in the tourism sector and is designed as the practical implementation of the Regional Tourism Strategy. The NWDA’s goal is to create and foster a network of agents (including itself) capable of developing and implementing innovative ideas pragmatically. B. SAV Activities: Milestones (to date): 1. Vision for the Region’s Tourism Sector published 2. Development of Tourism Marketing Framework 3. Northwest Tourism Forum/ Regional Marketing Forum established 4. Set up 5 new sub regional Tourist Boards 5. Regular Marketing Expert Meetings Prime examples of activity resulting from the Framework, as a result of the Agency’s strategic added value (2005/6): the Regional Gardens Campaign, Regional Tourism Conference, Regional Tourism Awards and a Northwest Tourism Supplement. Strategic / Catalytic Activity:

• • •

The Northwest Tourism Forum was created by the NWDA to act as a strategic monitoring body for the recently launched Regional Tourism Strategy. The Forum is now providing a voice for businesses and organisations. An additional Regional Marketing Forum chaired by the NWDA provides a strategic direction and specialist knowledge on regional visitor perceptions. This was the first time that this approach had been undertaken and partners brought together in such a strategic way. The NWDA is acting as a force for cohesion – the Framework is giving the five new Tourist Boards the strategic platform to develop their own strategies and plans.

Increasing Co-ordination, Alignment & Partnership:

Partnerships were designed to be the key to the Framework, to learn, to raise standards and lever funds. This was critical to bringing in the local authorities that are key local deliverers. The partnership approach was key to guarantee a sustainable high standard of service amongst the new tourist Boards. The Tourism Marketing Experts Group, with members drawn from the NWDA and each Tourist Board, helps to regulate business planning, strategy formulation and cross-regional implementation of activities.

Improving Intelligence, Influencing & Awareness Raising:

The Framework is a prime driver of best practice. An example is the Northwest Gardens campaign that provided intelligence for sub-regional campaigns and a thematic monitoring programme that to capture resulting visitor spend.


The setting up of Northwest Tourist Forum is creating a sharing of information and encouraging better participation in planning. It also helps to monitor the progress of the Regional Tourism Strategy.

C. Evaluation: Monitoring and evaluation of the Framework includes the following:

• • •

Progress on delivery and outputs is monitored through quarterly reports and review meetings. Return on investment demonstrated by the campaigns and programmes that the Framework inspires and their value in terms of visitor attraction and spend. The Framework has set a standard procedure for undertaking impact/evaluation assessment that is employed across the network of tourism experts. This consistency did not exist before.

E. Corporate Performance Indicators CATEGORY AND INDICATOR





MPs/MEPs – Acknowledge receipt of letter within 24 hours and provide a full response within 10 working days



PQs – Respond to all Parliamentary Questions within the stipulated deadline



Telephone Calls – Answer incoming calls within 7 seconds



People Sickness absence rate



Staff turnover rate



Recruitment (internal competition only) – Timescale for recruitment, allowing for one month notice period

<11 weeks

7 weeks

Recruitment (external competition) – Timescale for recruitment, allowing for one month notice period

<17 weeks

12 weeks

Recruitment (external competition) – Timescale for recruitment, allowing for three month notice period

<25 weeks

19 weeks





Customers Complaints – Acknowledge a complaint within 24 hours and provide a full response within 10 working days

ICT User satisfaction (rating out of 7) % of help calls resolved within agreed timescales


Network availability within core business hours



Finance Payment of undisputed invoices within 30 days







% Difference between forecast and actual expenditure Efficiencies Overall reduction in administration budget and generation of efficiency in programme, which is incorporated back into the programme budget. •

Significant variations between target and actual performance are in the following areas: o

Staff Turnover - The staff turnover rate target of <15% was exceeded at 17.5%. However, much of the turnover was a consequence of organisational restructuring within the Enterprise, Innovation and Skills Directorate, and it is therefore not surprising that the rate was higher than normal.


Payment of Invoices - The payment of undisputed invoices rate at 84% was below target but represented a minor improvement on 2004/05 performance (83%). The Agency is continuuing to refine its processes to drive up performance towards the target of 95%.

Efficiency Plan A detailed quarterly report showing progress against Efficiency Plan targets is to be presented to the Board and to DTi. To summarise the half year position, some 83% of the annual efficiency gains required have been realised. Half-year administration savings are £669k against a half-year target of £364k with the Agency having reduced its reliance on external legal consultancy through the creation of an in-house legal team. The Agency is ahead of target for cashable administrative savings at the half year, and expects to meet or possibly exceed its target for this year. Programme cashable savings of £2.2m against a target of £1.8m have been evidenced (58% of annual target). To the half-year, programme non-cashable savings of £6.9m have been achieved against a target of £2.14m (Annual target £4.6m). The savings have been calculated as the financial equivalent of improvements in the Agency’s core outputs.


F. Financial Performance Annual Plan £ 473,818

Plan £m 219,530

April – September 2005 Actual £m 175,396

Actual – Plan £m (44,134)

The variation between planned expenditure and actual expenditure is due to a slower than anticipated rate of expenditure at the start of the financial year which will be made up in the second half of the year. This was particularly the case with some major URC projects, SRB schemes and major projects managed directly by the Agency. However, in overall terms the proportion of annual budget spend in the first half of the year is broadly in line with last year and the Agency’s financial forecasts which are rigorously reviewed every month, show that the full annual budget will be spent.








1. Number of jobs created or safeguarded.





2. Number of people assisted to get a job.





3. Number of new businesses created/attracted to the region.





4. Number of businesses assisted to improve their performance.





4a. Number of businesses within the region assisted to engage in new collaborations with the UK knowledge base





270 38%

450 62%

260 49%

19 26%





5. Public and private regeneration infrastructure investment levered. (i) Total (£m) (ii) % private leverage 5a. Hectares of Brownfield Land reclaimed and/or redeveloped


COMMENTS Forecast is that target will be met. Strong performance to date which exceeds performance in same period in 2004/05 Target will be significantly exceeded. This is a new output indicator for NWDA and lack of previous experience led to target being severely understated. Forecast is that target will be met. Outputs come mainly from BLO interventions. Excellent performance in first half of year. Forecast is that target will be exceeded. However, BLO intensive assists are now included in forecast but were not in target. Without these, forecast would be 14,351, which still exceeds target. Target will be significantly exceeded. This is a new output indicator for NWDA and lack of previous experience led to target being severely understated. Also almost 50% of forecast comes from HEIF2 and outputs from this programme were not known at the time the target was set. Forecast is currently indicating that overall leverage target will not be met. However NWDA is confident that improved reporting in the second half of the year will make up the shortfall. Actual to date is not surprising as partners tend to capture and report leverage at the end of the year. Forecast is that target will be met and NWDA will again contribute c30% of the Government’s national brownfield land target. Actuals to date are in line with previous years – land reclamation programmes are managed through annual delivery plans and allocations so site completions tend to occur in the second half of the year.







6. Number of people assisted in their skills development.





6a. Number of adults in the workforce achieving at least a full Level 2 qualification or equivalent.









6b. Number of adults gaining basic skills.

COMMENTS Forecast is currently that target will not be met. However this is indicating as a result of the new definition for this tasking indicator and NWDAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s requirement that the type of learning is defined which has resulted in a number of partnerships substantially reducing their skills forecasts. A specific piece of work is to be undertaken with partnerships to ensure they understand the new indicator and its components and how they should be used in output forecasting and collection. We are very confident that this will increase the forecast and that the target will be achieved. Forecast is currently indicating that the target will not be met. This is a new output indicator for NWDA and lack of previous experience led to target being over-stated. The above work with partnerships will include a review of performance against this component to ensure that legitimate outputs are not being missed from forecasting and reporting. Again, we are confident that this work will result in the target being achieved. Target will be significantly exceeded. This is a new output indicator for NWDA and lack of previous experience led to target being severely understated.

Note: RDA targets are set within minimum and maximum ranges as shown. Where the commentary notes that the forecast is that the target will be met or will not be met, the target referred to is the minimum within the range. Where the commentary notes that the target will be exceeded, the target referred to is the maximum within the range.


Output Performance - Of the ten output targets for 2005/06 the Agency is currently forecasting three will be met within the target range, four will be exceeded (i.e. above the range) and three will not be met (i.e. below the range). All of the four indicators whose forecasts exceed the target range are new output indicators for NWDA, introduced as part of the new RDA Tasking Framework in April 2005, and target setting in the absence of agreed output definitions or evidence from previous years performance monitoring was therefore very imprecise. The Agency's Corporate Plan noted that 2005/06 was a transitional year in terms of migrating from the Tier 3 output framework to the Tasking Framework and flagged up the risk of some targets being proved to be set at incorrect levels. Of the three indicators whose forecasts are below the target range, one is again completely new and two are variations on outputs previously used. Part of the transition is to ensure that all users of the Tasking Framework fully understand the new output definitions and maximise output reporting. Having successfully converted all existing projects from old outputs to new outputs in the first half of the year, this is now a priority for the Agency in the second half of the year. We are confident that this will result in additional outputs being captured in forecasts and reported actuals and that the targets will be met.

RDA Tasking Framework - The Agency has implemented the Tasking Framework of new output indicators. This was achieved through the creation and implementation of a Transition Plan in conjunction with the SAPIP change programme. The Transition Plan enabled Agency staff to transfer project outputs from the redundant Tier Three regime to the new Tasking indicators.

Output Performance By Urban, Rural and Disadvantaged Local Authority District Actual outputs achieved to date for the headline indicators are disaggregated into urban, rural and disadvantaged areas. Rural areas are chosen by Local Authority Districts (LAD) using the Tarling Classification adopted by the Countryside Agency - which defines a LAD as rural. All those LADs not defined as rural are urban. The 25 LADs identified in the existing RES as regeneration priority areas are classified as disadvantaged. They are listed below: • • •

Allerdal e Barrow in Furness Blackbu rn with Darwen Blackpo ol




Ellesmere Port and Neston












• •

Sefton St. Helens Tamesi de West Lancashire



This disaggregation methodology is as set out in the Agency’s approved Corporate Plan.


HEADLINE OUTPUT INDICATORS 1. Number of jobs created or safeguarded. 2. Number of people assisted to get a job. 3. Number of new businesses created 4. Number of businesses assisted to improve their performance. 5. Public and private regeneration infrastructure investment levered. Total (£m) 6. Number of people assisted in their skills development as a result of RDA programmes.

URBAN 2,455 3,689 861 5,008

RURAL 2,581 429 202 1,253

DISADVANTAGED 4,012 4,073 712 5,593







Other Performance Management Issues •

Evaluation - The Agency commissioned and started the evaluation of two regional policies: Rural Renaissance and the Manufacturing Action Plan. These are due to complete in February 2006 and based on the lessons learned from this work, the Agency will formulate and implement a rolling programme of policy evaluations from 2006/07 onwards. The future evaluation programme will take due account of recent guidance issued by DTI on evaluation methodology and will be additional to project evaluation (undertaken within Single Programme requirements) and RDA impact evaluation which is currently the subject of discussion between the RDAs and DTI.

Independent Performance Assessment - The Agency has played a leading role in designing the new Independent Performance Assessment for RDAs and, together with EEDA, has agreed to be the first RDA to go through the process. The Self Assessment starts in November 2005.

Performance Improvement Plan - The Agency has repeated its practice of last year to extract from the GONW 2004/05 Performance Report, Stakeholder Survey and NAO Management Letter key areas for improvement. These have been set out in an internal Performance Improvement Plan, which will be embedded in the Improvement Plan developed as part of the IPA Self Assessment (see above).

Investors in People - The Agency was officially awarded the Investors in People Standard (iiP) in July. NWDA Chief Executive Steven Broomhead was presented with the Award at a prestigious Investors in People Awards ceremony, which took place at United Utilities, Langley Mere, Warrington.

Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) - Work started on the SIP for the period 2006 - 2009, with the plan aligned to the new Regional Economic Strategy. The Plan identifies the Agency’s expenditure priorities, lists the projects that the Agency intends to fund and identifies financial headroom for new projects.

Project KIA (Know It All) - Project KIA was launched with a Project Board in order to develop a data and information management system and a fully functional Knowledge Management System incorporating Client Relationship Management.


H. Risk Management During the period the Agency took the following steps: •

Developed its corporate risk register.

Put in place Directorate level risk registers associated with Business Plan delivery, with high level risks feeding into the corporate risk register.

Put in place mechanisms to review and report on Directorate risk registers through quarterly reporting.

Established a new corporate Risk and Performance Management Group to review, on a quarterly basis, and agree action on key risks across the Agency.

Developed new risk management procedures on projects, to be implemented across the Agency in the second half of the year through SAPIP.


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