How we measure our performance

We measure our performance against the key priorities and outcomes included in our corporate plan.

To assess progress and performance against these priorities and outcomes, along with performance against individual service objectives, we have a performance management framework that consists of three elements:

  • corporate plan priorities
  • corporate health of the organisation
  • directorate performance

Each quarter, we produce a performance report summarising our performance against the priorities and outcomes and how well we're performing.

Quarter 4 2019-20

Thriving and vibrant economy

Outcome 1 - Create more and better jobs and good business growth

  • 33 new businesses started with our help.

  • 37 businesses have been supported to expand.

  • Our work with the private sector has created 638 jobs for the borough.

  • 12 companies have relocated to the borough creating 142 new jobs and securing over £10.1m of private sector investment for the area.
COVID-19 (coronavirus) support to businesses

Barnsley Council has paid out over £19M in business grants to over 1762 businesses in Barnsley ahead of receiving money from central government. 

Working with the council's finance team, an online process was developed to make payments faster in order to support Barnsley's economy and hardworking residents who found themselves in need of support.

Financial update

Outcome 2 - Increase skills to get more people working

  • A further 24 apprentices started on the programme in Q4, equating to 1.11% of our workforce. At Q4 7.6% of 16 and 17 year olds in Barnsley were on an apprenticeship.

  • We have achieved a year-end return of 65.6% participation of care leavers.

  • Employment opportunities for those with learning disabilities is at 5.5%.

  • The percentage of the working age population with a Level 2+ qualification is at 71.9% which means we are closing the gap with regional and national figures.

  • The percentage of the working age population with a Level 4+ qualification has risen to 26.6%

Pathways to progression

In February, our TIAG Team worked with the Construction Skills Village, to deliver a CITB Health, Safety and Environment Test to a group of young people who were NEET in order to support them to gain employment.

The HSE Test is a pre-requisite for any individual applying for a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) Card in order to gain work in the industry.

Working with Construction Skills Village tutors and supported by TIAG Personal Advisers, young people were supported to gain an insight into the industry and different occupational sectors as well as the skills and knowledge they need to work safely in the industry.

Twelve young people attended and all of them passed the HSE Test. Work is now underway to help them apply for their CSCS card before they can start to gain work in the industry.

Outcome 3 - Develop a vibrant town centre

  • 87% of town centre units are occupied and 83% of market stalls.

  • Footfall was 1,470,102 in Q4, a reduction in footfall due to the impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

  • Barnsley town centre has been awarded Purple Flag status which identifies the town centre as offering an entertaining, diverse, safe and enjoyable night out.
 Market Kitchen features in Yorkshire Good Food Guide

In January, Market Kitchen featured in the Yorkshire Good Food Guide, highlighting the overwhelmingly positive response we have seen so far to the development.

The article concludes “It’s safe to say that the public has truly embraced the new site, and with an ever-expanding range of customers, Barnsley’s Market Kitchen caters for anyone and everyone. With the rest of the development set for completion in 2021, named in honour of the town’s industrial heritage, watch this space as The Glassworks puts Barnsley firmly on the cultural map.”

February saw the opening of Meze – an offshoot of the popular local Mediterranean/Turkish restaurant the Lemon Tree.

Market kitchen logo

Outcome 4 - Strengthen our visitor economy

  • 212,140 people visited our museums contributing an estimate £4.6 million to the local economy.

  • Wentworth Castle gardens contribution to the overall Quarter 4 figures was £406,381.

  • Trans Pennine Trail usage was 76,677 at Q4. The year end out-turn is 535,970 against a target of 420,000. Despite a wet winter and the COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions, this is an overall increase in usage compared with the same period in 2018/19.
Cooper Cottage development

The Cooper Cottage was an unused derelict building to the rear entrance of the Cooper Gallery in Barnsley. The building was transformed thanks to funding from Arts Council England, and Barnsley Museums and Heritage Trust.

A new flexible multifunctional space was created downstairs allowing for
provision of a new café, gallery space for artists to display and sell their work and space for small self-contained events in the cottage itself or in the garden.

Three artists’ studios were created for rent in the upstairs area which provide much needed facilities for local artists and support for the creative industries in Barnsley.

The public garden to the front of the cottage was transformed by the addition of infrastructure to allow for digital art forms such as film commissions, thereby
extending the gallery offer and creating a more vibrant space.

  Cooper Cottage

Outcome 5 - Create more and better housing

  • 263 new homes have been built in Q4; 76 of these are affordable homes.

  • 96% of housing stock meets Barnsley Decent Homes Standard.

  • The Berneslai Homes average property void time is 23.84 days.

  • The Berneslai Homes rental collection rate is 97.48%

  • 28 empty properties have been brought back into use in Q4.

Developed by Leeds and Yorkshire Housing Association, this scheme of 54 affordable homes (49 affordable rent and 5 shared-ownership) were completed in March 2020.

In line with the council’s nominations agreement, all of the affordable rented homes were allocated to applicants on the Council’s housing register.

Catherines Walk, Athersley
Affordable homes spotlight - Catherine's Walk, Athersley



People achieving their potential

Outcome 6 - Every child attends a good school and is successful in learning and work

  • 99% of our early years and childcare settings received ratings of good or outstanding from Ofsted; this is above national (96%) and regional (97%) comparators.
      
  • The proportion of pupils attending schools and settings judged good or outstanding by Ofsted is 73.4% at Q4. This is an improvement on the Q3 figure of 68.2%.

  • Barnsley's Attainment 8 score increased from 42.5 to 44.1 in 2019 and is now just -0.6 points below the national average of 44.7. Our Progress 8 score has also increased from -0.15 to -0.08 but is still below the national average of -0.03 for state funded schools. 

  • Four schools had a KS4 progress score that was above average. This is an improvement on three schools in 2018.

  • 65.9% of Education, Health and Care Plans were issued within 20 weeks excluding exceptions.

  • Attendance in Barnsley primary schools for the academic year 2018/19 was 95.5%; an improvement from 95.4% in 2017/18.

  • Attendance in Barnsley secondary schools for the academic year 2018/19 was 93.5%; a decrease of 0.1% from 2017/18.
Free childcare for 2 year olds

Take up of two year old’s entitlement to free childcare/education is now 73.4% taking us just over target.

Alongside our existing marketing, for Q4 we have newly designed marketing and new campaigns active within Barnsley Interchange, Barnsley Alhambra and on local bus tickets.

We have a set of animations to focus on key messages such as flexibility, benefits and employment, concerns children are too young and extended family caring for children.

We hope that this will help to break down the barriers some eligible families face in terms of taking up their places.

Free childcare two year olds

Outcome 7 - Reducing demand through improving access to early help

  • We completed 92.8% of our adult social care reviews to timescale. This is well above target and far exceeds the national average of 61%. We currently rank in the top two in terms of performance among regional ADASS groups (Association of Directors of Adult Social Services).

  • 42.5% of adult social care clients were in receipt of direct payments in Q4. The spot purchase project has meant a reduction in the number of those receiving direct payments, therefore we have not met the target for this year.

  • The number of claims made to DCLG (Department for Communities and Local Government) for significant and sustained improvement is 389 at Q4 for troubled families. 

  • 53% of re-ablement clients completed the programme in Q4 with no long term needs. This measure is above target.

  • 90.5% of patients are still at home after 91 days following re-ablement which is above the national average of 82.4%.
  • Latest available data shows that 34 young people entered the Youth Justice System for the first time (October 2018 to September 2019). This is a reduction on the 56 reported for the same period the year before.

  • Barnsley is below the England average of 220 and the Yorkshire average of 229 for rates per 100,000 of the age 10-17 population entering the Youth Justice System.
Barnsley dementia care services celebrated

Barnsley’s first ever dementia awards ceremony was held in January and saw professionals and volunteers in the health and social care sectors come together at Barnsley Metrodome to celebrate the best of Barnsley dementia care services.

National, regional and local speakers brought delegates up to date with the latest dementia research and future plans. There was also a discussion on what services are doing to meet the needs of people living with dementia and their carers in Barnsley. The day finished with an awards ceremony for categories like ‘Best of Barnsley Residential Care Manager Award’ and ‘Best of Barnsley Dementia Support Volunteer Award’.

Barnsley dementia care awards

Outcome 8 - Children and adults are safe from harm

  • 91.7% of looked after children were in family fostering placements at the end of Q4.

  • 12.3% of referrals in to children’s social care were repeat referrals in Q4 against a target of 18%. This is the lowest reported re-referral rate for more than two years.

  • 28.7% of assessments for children’s social care were carried out within 20 days of referral in Q4.

  • 92 of 102 (90.2%) Section 47 investigations proceeded to initial child protection conference within 15 days.

  • At Q4, we have successfully prevented homelessness in 148 cases; taking our year-end figure to 606 against a target of 240.

  • 364 people aged 65+, and 15 people aged 18-64 have been permanently admitted to residential and nursing care in Q4. Both of these are within target at year-end.

  • Delayed transfers of care attributable to Social Services was 0.3 per 100,000 population at Q4 against a target of 0.7. Performance ranks us in the top 15 authorities nationally.

  • 94.9% of Adult Safeguarding Section 42 decisions were made within 72 hours.

  • There were 1,206 anti-social behaviour incidents reported in Q4; an increase on Q3 but still within target for the year.

Speak up campaign

Barnsley Council is reminding residents that IDAS (Independent  Domestic Abuse Services) are supporting vulnerable people at risk of harm during social isolation.

IDAS is a commissioned service in Barnsley who provide advice and guidance to people and their families that suffer from domestic abuse.

IDAS Speak up you are not alone poster

Outcome 9 - People are healthier, happier, independent and active

  • 73.1% of those aged 65+ were immunised against flu in 2019/20; this is slightly lower than the Yorkshire and Humber rate of 73.7%, but higher than the England rate of 72.4%.

  • Barnsley is the second highest (39.6%) for the prevalence of decayed, missing or filled teeth in 5-year-old children in the the Yorkshire and Humber region. The national average is 23.4%.
Teenage conception rate per 1,000 in 15 to 17 year olds

Barnsley’s 2018 teenage conception rate of 26.3 per 100,000 is higher than the regional and national rates of 19.6 and 16.7 per 100,000 respectively and is the highest of South Yorkshire authorities. The current rate is the lowest since 1998 and represents a 56.3% reduction. The rate has decreased rapidly in the past few years and our aspirational target of 31% has been exceeded.

We are updating our teenage pregnancy and sexual health strategy that will be launched at Barnsley’s first ever sexual health conference later in the year. The re commissioning of Spectrum as our provider for integrated sexual health services has presented a fantastic opportunity to retain our relationships and sexual health education (RSE) offer for Barnsley secondary schools. This offer is well received by school staff and students alike. 2080 year 9’s (13/14 year olds) received RSE input from Spectrum last year.

Evaluations are completed with students at the beginning and end of  interventions. 2.63% of students could name five or more methods of contraception at the beginning of the intervention, this rose to 79.25% by the end of the intervention. Good quality RSE is widely evidence based to be a protective factor for teenage conceptions. The new teenage pregnancy strategy will encompass a range of updated evidence based interventions, including support for parents and professionals to talk to young people about relationships and sex and wider support for young families to improve health and wellbeing outcomes. The new contract with Spectrum will work on the engagement of pharmacies to provide free, emergency hormonal contraception (EHC) to young women under the age of 25. Early engagement with the LPC around this has been promising and this will ensure young people can access emergency contraception when they need it most.



Strong and resilient communities

Outcome 10 - People volunteering and contributing towards stronger communities

  • 1,620 people volunteered in their communities in Q4.

  • 302 were new volunteers, an increase on the last quarter.

  • Volunteering activity in Q4 equates to £103,474 equivalent cashable value.

  • 2,718 volunteer hours were completed for Barnsley Museums in Q4, with a cashable equivalent of £36,270.
SWAT – (Stairfoot Ward Alliance Team) in Action – Joint Environmental Day Hoyle Mill Lane

The Stairfoot Ward Alliance agreed to organise and deliver at least 6 Environmental Days over the year. Working with all our partners (community groups, contracted providers and Barnsley Council officers) an environmental day was arranged in February. The Area Team helped to co-ordinate the day, doing all the planning, inviting the various partners to attend and advising them of what their role would be on the day, doing the risk assessments, signing in sheets and promoting the day to local people. It was important to help promote the work of the Stairfoot Ward Alliance and its partners, clean up a difficult area and to promote volunteering in the area.

A huge difference was made to this area as a result of this initiative, with over 50 bags of rubbish being collected, graffiti removed from some areas, ‘no dog fouling signs’ being sprayed on the pavements, and a particularly bad alley-way being cleared of dog fouling. 16 volunteers attended the day and information about the district enforcement team and Friends of Stairfoot Group was posted in all the letter boxes.

Stairfoot Ward Alliance Team joint environmental day

Outcome 11 - Protecting our borough for future generations

  • 97.5% of category one pot holes were repaired within 24 hours.

  • The average duration of works on principal or major routes was down to 3.68 days in Q4.

  • 82.5% of the total highways cost (revenue and capital) is spent directly on carriageway and foot way repairs.

  • In Q4 we derived enough energy from waste to power 3,345 homes.

  • The rolling annual average NO2 concentration recorded at our Pogmoor air quality monitoring station was 30 microgrammes per cubic metre for Q4.

  • CO2 emissions have continued to fall from the 2012 baseline of 46,310 tonnes to currently 25,360 tonnes giving a total reduction of 45%.

  • 94.8% of household waste was diverted from landfill (based only on January figures)

  • 88.3% of all refuse collections were made on the scheduled day in Q4. COVID-19 (coronavirus) had a massive impact on round completions in March.
Energise Barnsley

A further 55 properties have benefited from energy efficiency works in Q4.

Following the recovery plan introduced last quarter, installs under the Better Homes Barnsley scheme have increased to a figure of 140 for year end, a shortfall against the expected target of 285.

Energise Barnsley Logo.

Outcome 12 - Customers can contact us easily and use more services online

  • 66.9% of contacts with the council were made online in Q4 – an increase on the Q3 figure.

  • Take up of superfast broadband is now on target at 54.27%.

  • Digital champions continue to run regular sessions in community venues to help people gain the skills and confidence to access services and information online. 1944 people, 202 sessions and 423 hours training took place in Q4.
Improving the fly-tipping collection service

Our customers wanted a better way of reporting fly-tipping and we have made significant progress in this area over the last two years. We have introduced 'pin on a map' reporting and web chat so that customers can now report fly-tipping through self-service, web chat, Facebook or Twitter. 

Since 2017/18 we have had a year-on-year increase in the completion of online forms from 47% to 77.4%, and in December 2019 we amended the text used in communications to educate and to thank people for reporting fly-tipping.

This is an extract of some of the comments we have received in the last year:

  • 'Very effective way to lodge a complaint and hopefully will also be responded to effectively'
  • 'Website is much more user friendly'
  • 'Having lived in a dozen different areas, this is by far the best fly-tipping reporting tool I have used. Barnsley Council take a bow. Have you thought about selling it?'
Fly-tipping map



One council

One Council priorities

Our 'One Council' priority includes the things that we want to achieve to ensure that we are running our council as efficiently as we can, enabling us to provide the best possible outcomes for our district and its residents.

  • Number of compliments linked to our values in Q4:
    • Compliments and complaints data not available in Q4 due to redeployment of staff linked to COVID-19 (coronavirus)

  • 100% of forecast efficiency savings have been achieved in Q4.

  • The Council Tax collection rate in Q4 was 95.85.

  • The Business Rates collection rate was 98.26.

  • Our staff undertook 28 days of employer supported volunteering in Q4.
Investors in People Gold accreditation

In March we announced that once again we have been awarded the prestigious Investors in People (IiP) Gold accreditation. The council was first awarded its nationally recognised IiP Gold status in 2016, which recognises good employers committed to excellence in business and people management.

The accreditation process involved a staff survey, plus meetings between staff and the IiP external assessor.

Chief Executive, Sarah Norman said:
“We received our first gold accreditation in 2016 and since then we’ve continued to demonstrate significant progress and improvements over the last three years. It’s a real testament to the hard work and commitment of our staff in achieving our priorities of a brighter future – a better Barnsley. I want to thank all staff for their continuous efforts to provide quality services to our communities.”

Cllr Alan Gardiner, Cabinet spokesperson for Core Services, added:
“These fantastic results not only highlight the great things we're doing to support our employees, but it also helps us to focus on areas where we can make further improvements and work towards our Barnsley 2030 aspirations. We strive to be a high performing council, and with our committed workforce and continuous improvement plan, I’m confident that we’ll achieve these aspirations.”

Investors in People Gold accreditation



Finance Data Quarter 4 2019/20

Spend per outcome

Outcome Budget Out-turn Variance % variance Commentary
1 1,949,677 1,865,328 84,339 -4% Staff savings in Development Management and Economic Strategy along with underspend on projects
2 1,386,877 1,382,685 4,192 0% Balanced position as per Q4.
3 44,600 114,211 158,811 -356% Lower than anticipated market rents.
4 2,401,132 2,239,190 169,942 -7% Vacancy factor, over-achievement of grant funding and underspend on town centre marketing programme
5 1,448,083 1,167,538 280,545 -19% Staff turnover and mat leave savings.
6 10,486,168 11,063,706 577,538 6% Additional cost of home to school transport due to increased pupil numbers and a 15% increase in in- borough transport costs combined with Inclusion services increased use/cost of agency staff.
7 6,259,561 5,774,765 484,796 -8% Staff turnover and vacancies within the service combined with underspends relating to contracts, and additional RSI funding.
8 79,779,928 76,465,141 3,314,787 -4% Increased client contributions/income, health funding and direct payments claw back
9 5,616,439 4,139,344 1,477,094 -26% Resources required to ensure the successful delivery of the service’s four year plan
10 4,982,477 4,837,063 145,414 -3% Unspent funding to support the delivery of a range of contracts / initiatives across Area Council.
11 23,782,602 23,794,682 12,080 0% Balanced position as per Q4.
12 2,957,533 3,099,736 142,203 5% Increases in staffing costs and standby payments.

You can also view this information in downloadable documents or a data table below, and read the press release.

Previous performance reports