Regulatory Services: Officers for the Future

Summary report for policymakers

Hirsh W |   | Local Government Association | Oct 2014

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This paper, aimed at policymakers, summarises the findings of a small scale exploratory study of what have recently been called the ‘regulatory services’ of local government, namely trading standards (TS), licensing (L) and environmental health (EH).

Spring 2014 is a time which presents great opportunities but also significant pressures on these particular council services. This context creates the opportunity for re-thinking the purpose and nature of regulatory services in local government and how they are best organised and staffed. In particular, the LGA wanted to explore the extent to which local government might be moving towards a generic ‘regulatory services professional’ – that is an officer working across these three services.

The findings of this project will be used by the LGA to inform discussions within the local government sector about directions for change in these services, and with professional bodies and training providers about the skills and qualifications required by officers working in these regulatory areas.

The findings summarised here are based on available reports and workforce data and interviews with over 35 individuals from a range of councils and other stakeholders. Further details of the study approach can be found in the Appendix.