Administration Self-assessment and Improvement Planning

Most councils in Scotland operate with an ‘Administration’, and although these Administrations do not have legal or constitutional standing, they nonetheless operate as a key element in decision-making processes in the council.

The self-assessment and improvement planning support provides space and time for Administrations to step back, reflect on ‘how’ they work by reviewing processes, working relationships and examining its fitness for purpose.

Without stepping back to reflect on ‘how’ the administration is working, there is a risk that the ‘doing’ becomes less effective over time as ways of working and group dynamics become engrained.


The self-assessment and improvement planning process normally proceeds as follows:

  1. The Improvement Service will discuss the requirements with members of the Administration and draft a checklist of statements for approval. The generic checklist can be used or a new checklist drafted if required.
  2. Administration members agree the checklist of statements
  3. Dates are agreed for:

    - distributing the checklist to Administration members for completion
    - completion of the checklist by Administration members (typically 2-3 weeks after distribution)
    - a facilitated 3-hour Improvement Planning session (typically 2 weeks after the completion date)

  4. The checklist is then distributed by the Improvement Service to the Administration members for completion.

  5. The Improvement Planning session (facilitated by the Improvement Service) presents the evidence from the checklist survey.

Administration members work in groups to filter down the areas for improvement, reaching consensus on a small number of key improvement actions. These are then worked into a draft Improvement Plan for the Administration to take forward.

Please contact if you are interested in this support.

David Barr - Project Manager, Organisational Development