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Performance

Driving improvement

The Authority continues to try to improve the quality and value for money of the services we provide. The Authority's Audit and Review Committee has lead responsibility for issues relating to our performance. A number of different processes are in place to enable a rounded picture of our performance to be drawn.

The Corporate Plan

Each year in the Corporate Plan we set out our priorities and how we are going to work on them through our:

  • objectives
    the major things that we intend to achieve over the next three years, including, where appropriate, a specific target for the year ahead;

and

  • actions
    the things that we intend to do in the next year to help achieve our objectives.

Performance

Progress on our objectives is monitored every six months during the year by the Audit and Review Committee. At the end of the year, the full Authority Committee receives a detailed report analysing progress on all the objectives in a full Committee report.

Customer satisfaction

We regularly carry out surveys of satisfaction with the services we provide to the public. This includes surveys of people who use our Planning Service, National Park Centres and so on.

Our Planning service targets and results for 2013/14 are set out below.

Target
Achievement
80% of planning applicants satisfied with the service 80%
60% of major applications determined within 13 weeks 60%
65% of minor applications determined within 8 weeks 66%
80% of other applications determined within 8 weeks 82%

Residents survey

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Residents Survey is carried out every five years to ascertain residents’ awareness of and attitudes towards the National Park and the National Park Authority and our work. The first survey took place in 1999 and the latest survey of 800 residents living in the Yorkshire Dales National Park was undertaken during February and March 2014.

Census data was used to impose quotas to ensure a representative spread of residents living in different areas within the National Park and from different age bands were interviewed.

In the 2014 survey, 97% of those interviewed thought the Yorkshire Dales is a special place, and 77% of those mentioned the “natural beauty, scenery and views” as the key special quality. However, 60% also think that the National Park is faced with threats and pressures.

Meanwhile 98% of residents said they had come into contact with one or more of the services provided by the National Park Authority, with 72% experiencing one of the face to face services involving interaction with a member of National Park Authority staff in the last five years. Overall, 60% of residents surveyed said they were satisfied with the way the Authority does its job and it was good to learn that for a number of our services, satisfaction levels were over 80%.

National Park Authority Chief Executive, David Butterworth, said, “In the context of five years of Government cuts to our budgets which now total 40% and the consequent reductions we’ve had to make to staff numbers and services, many aspects of the survey are very pleasing. However, there is plenty of feedback we can learn from and we look forward to using this to help us to continue to improve how we work with and on behalf of the residents of this wonderful National Park in the future”.

You can see the results of the whole survey by downloading the PDF document below:

Standards

The Authority has a clear set of standards of service and as part of our commitment to continuous improvement, the Authority has a rigorous system for registering and responding to compliments, complaints and comments from the public. These are reported, together with the action taken, to our Audit and Review Committee.

Audit and inspection

Each year the Audit Commission audits our financial processes, our use of resources and our general performance. Its findings are reported to the Authority. Any significant actions required are then included within the Corporate Plan.

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