NI14 Guidance released

July 9, 2008

The long awaited guidance to the National Performance Indicator 14 (avoidable contact) has been released onto the Improvement & Development Agency’s web site (64 page PDF).

Depending upon how you view these things it was a good day or bad one, since it also coincided with the new White Paper from the DCLG (157 pages {PDF, 1809 Kb), which also has things to say about civic engagement, making information available and other matters.

Importantly for this research, the first document states on page 13 that ‘we are exploiting and approach that will help us to…design services that reflect the needs of customers not arbitrary targets or performance measures.’ Which rather amuses me when we are actually talking about an indicator apparently designed to measure ‘failure demand’ but rebranded for Ministerial purposes to avoid the word ‘failure’ and also John Seddon’s interest in the concept! Especially when ‘failure demand’ is not considered something to be measured but to be ‘designed out’ of processes…

Unfortunately, whilst the ultimate aim is laudable, we are likely to be creating an entire industry of NI14 measurers in the process. The company rol which produces GovMetric gets a good mention in the guidance since they’re developing their package to support NI14, which may be an easy way of getting both dissatisfaction data and NI14, at a cost, but if you do it manually there is still a significant outlay in obtaining statistically significant data.

‘Que sera, sera’ as Doris Day sang or ‘O que sera’ as they apparently say in Portugal – whatever will be, will be!


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