Get to know Simon Bailey - Talent Bank Associate

Tell us about your yourself

I am a fully qualified Revenues and Benefits professional and an active member of the Institute of Revenues, Rating and Valuation (IRRV). After working in the public sector for many years, I took an opportunity to become a freelance consultant and have worked with numerous local authorities and private companies since then.

My experience encompasses the following areas:

  • Interim management for small districts to large unitary authorities
  • Full project management of IT systems including core systems and peripheral systems such as document management
  • Project management of significant changes such as the welfare reforms and other legislative changes
  • Development of business cases for shared services or other changes such as IT systems within Revenues and Benefits
  • IT system reviews
  • Preparation of options appraisals for services looking to outsource, create a shared service or bring their Revenues and Benefits services back in-house
  • Undertaking service reviews with recommendations for service delivery
  • Developing service specifications for authorities looking to outsource their services

I have sat on the Council of the IRRV, and I am currently an active executive member of the IRRV Severnside and South-West association.

I also regularly contribute as an author to the IRRV Insight and Benefit magazines on technology topics.

 

Tell us where you have come from and what has led you to be an associate on EELGA’s Talent Bank:

My career has spanned both the public and private sector, and I have been lucky to work with some great authorities during my time working in the Revenues and Benefits arena. These authorities have included small district councils, London Boroughs, metropolitan and unitary authorities.

I became aware of the Talent Bank when I was part of a project team which was outsourcing services at Peterborough City Council. The Talent Bank provides authorities with additional capacity when they need it,  which is a perfect fit for the services that I provide.

 

Which Sector/Industry do you work in?

My experience encompasses all areas of Local Taxation and Benefits, from interim management to complete project management. All my experience relates to the Revenues and Benefits discipline, which has been gained in all sectors.

I have significant experience and a keen interest in how new technology can assist Revenues and Benefits sections in their day-to-day operations. I have provided training, articles and presentations on the digital agenda.

 

What are the most significant challenges relating to Revenues and Benefits posed by Covid?

Revenues and Benefits services have been at the forefront of Covid activities by administering government business grants and helping people with Council Tax support during some exceedingly tricky times.  As we hopefully emerge from Covid restrictions, there will undoubtedly be issues over the collection of both Council Tax and Business Rates. Transparent processes and plans are needed to manage collection and maximise income for already cash strapped local authorities.

Authorities will have seen increased costs together with lost income and if they are to pay for this then cost-cutting maybe, quite rightly, the first port of call. However, now is the time to build upon the digital take up created during Covid and reap the rewards from efficiencies that digital services in Revenues and Benefits can bring. The pandemic is a wake-up call for Revenues and Benefits services to refocus their attention on the day-to-day operation methods and possibly invest in developing digital solutions that will be fit for the future but hopefully not another pandemic.

 

How do Revenues and Benefits influence positive change and results for our members?

Often, Revenues and Benefits professionals are extremely busy undertaking the day job and have little time to carry out additional functions such as project management or reviewing their services. This is where additional support from the EELGA Talent Bank can be invaluable for undertaking short-term tasks and providing a fresh perspective.


Could your organisation benefit from Simon Bailey’s expertise? Express interest in contracting Simon by emailing info@eelga.gov.uk

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