County council values | Oxfordshire County Council

County council values

Our values and competency framework when applying for job roles and attending interviews

CHOICE Values

Choice letters

Our values and competency framework

As a county council we have core values which guide the way we work. Linked to these values is a competency framework which outlines the skills and behaviours we expect staff to display when working for the organisation.

You may wish to familiarise yourself with these when applying for roles at the council.

Click on each of the values below to view the competencies which underpin them

Customer Focus

Treat customers as you would want to be treated; see things through their eyes and enable them to do more for themselves where possible

What good looks like:

For all staff

  • Represent the council positively in interactions with customers.
  • Take responsibility for customer service excellence
  • Deal empathetically with customers and where possible enable them to take up opportunities for themselves
  • Look for opportunities to improve the customer experience

For managers - as above plus

  • Get the best quality outcome overall for customers within the available resources
  • Analyse customer needs and develop networks and contacts to support this and your understanding
  • Explore opportunities for customers to make choices about the services they use and how they wish to access them
  • Improve the overall service performance of your team to improve the customer experience
  • Monitor and anticipate changing customer requirements

For leaders as above plus

  • Prioritise across diverse customer needs
  • Take a strategic view to identify links between services , service change and their cumulative impact on customers
  • Develop opportunities for customers to do more for themselves to make the most effective use of council resources

Honesty

Be open and transparent about your work. Operate with integrity showing an openness to learn from feedback and recognise where you need to change, improve or stop doing things

What good looks like

For all staff

  • Understand and uphold council’s rules, policies and procedures
  • Seek guidance when you need it
  • Accept and respond to constructive feedback
  • Make time to reflect and improve personally, be open about areas for development and actively pursue opportunities for improvement

For managers - as above plus

  • Ensure good governance is in place in relation to the work of your team
  • Ensure application of council’s rules, policies and procedures
  • Provide honest and regular constructive feedback to team members and other colleagues
  • Recognise high performance and deal with under performance promptly
  • Build lessons learnt into planning

For leaders - as above plus

  • Uphold and promote honesty and integrity; be a role model for others
  • Develop robust governance arrangements which ensure transparency and probity in decision making
  • Promote a culture that learns from experience or feedback and is open about priorities and future direction

One team

Focus on the outcome to be achieve, take ownership of your responsibilities and work with colleagues across the council and beyond to deliver

What good looks like

For all staff

  • Take ownership of your work and see it through to completion
  • Prioritise and deliver work in line with directorate and council goals
  • Support colleagues to deliver against project, team and directorate business plans
  • Keep up-to-date with council activities and the information you need to do your job

For managers - as above plus

  • Enable and drive the flow of communication through the council and with partner organisations/stakeholders
  • Keep team aware of council activities and priorities, including information they need to do their jobs effectively
  • Secure high quality outcomes, for the council and its’ customers, from work with colleagues (including external contractors', joint venture partners)
  • Take a strategic view of your work and look to achieve more by working with others
  • Take account of political priorities and the interests of councillors to ensure plans and activities are responsive to them
  • Coach staff effectively to support development and performance
  • Build team capability by making appropriate use of skills and opportunities to delegate/broaden experience

For leaders - as above plus

  • Be a champion of the council, public services and local democracy
  • Develop and promote a vision/strategic view for the organisation/service
  • Communicate information about strategic direction and policy issues to managers in your area , ensuring they understand the impact on their service
  • Build effective partnerships and networks with public and private agencies, external contractors and providers
  • Lead positive collaborations with providers
  • Reflect on leadership approach and adapt style to make the most of others

Innovation

Challenge the way things have always been done; take appropriate risks and look for opportunities to work differently to improve services

What good looks like

For all staff

  • Challenge assumptions regularly
  • Generate alternative options to support service improvement
  • Ask for and listen to the ideas of others and share your own

For managers - as above plus

  • Look for opportunities to delegate decision making and generate new ideas where appropriate
  • Consult with others to inform decision on new ways of doing things and appreciate risks
  • Seek and encourage ideas and improvements to deliver better approaches and services
  • Identify and apply lessons from relevant past projects to achieve a new outcome

For leaders - as above plus

  • Encourage imaginative thinking and genuinely listen to ideas from employees and stakeholders
  • Empower others to make decisions/take forward new ideas
  • Be prepared to take calculated risks in order to improve services/develop opportunities
  • Use professional knowledge to assess and manage medium and long term opportunities and risk
  • Identify and capitalise on opportunities to deliver in innovative ways through partner organisations
  • Understand ambiguity and show they way through complex and changing situations

Commercial

Be as careful with the council’s money as you would your own. Make the most of opportunities to improve the quality of services by getting real value from internal and external relationships and securing the best outcome

What good looks like

For all staff

  • Understand that all actions have a cost (e.g. time, money materials) and show initiative taking opportunities to explore how to deliver desired outcomes using the least resource
  • Understand the budgets that relate to your team/role and how you can contribute to making the best use of them
  • Understand the key performance metrics that your service is measured against and your contribution to them
  • Make decisions using the facts and seek to understand and manage risk

For managers - as above plus

  • Look for ways your team can function more efficiently and with commercial awareness
  • Give full consideration to resource, budgetary implications and risks when making decisions
  • Develop and encourage an awareness of internal and external costs and constructively challenge how these add value for the council and our customers
  • Develop a wide knowledge of the internal and external environment your service operates in and how it should respond to support the longer term aims of the council
  • Get to know your suppliers, actively manager your relationship with them and understand how the market can support current and longer aims of the council
  • Seek benchmarks of high performance in the external environment (other authorities, competitors etc) and apply to deliver improved results

For leaders - as above plus

  • Promote a culture of continuous improvement, commercial awareness and value for money to support the achievement of desired outcomes
  • Influence and negotiate with partners, as an intelligent customer, to achieve best value for the council
  • Seek out and facilitate the introduction of new ways of working to deliver better commercial and customer outcomes

Enthusiasm

Bring energy and commitment to your work, be proactive and open to change and look for opportunities to contribute to service improvement and organisational goals

What good looks like:

For all staff

  • Manage your workload effectively to ensure that targets and deadlines are met
  • Take a pro-active and flexible approach to your work
  • Stay calm under pressure
  • Engage positively with change
  • See the opportunities in problems and issues; focus on finding solutions
  • Take ownership of your performance and personal development; challenge yourself to do better
  • Share your experience/skill sin order to support improvements to services

For managers - as above plus

  • Commit to raising standards of performance in your team/service
  • Promote a clear sense of purpose within the team
  • Influence and motivate others to achieve goals and embrace change
  • Champion and support the team

For leaders - as above plus

  • Encourage and inspire others in order to achieve organisational goals
  • Lead others effectively through change
  • Create a high performance culture
  • Focus on long term outcomes and impacts seize opportunities and enable others to contribute
  • Capture opportunities for improvement and actively seek out others with whom to share lessons learned
Last reviewed
06 December 2016
PrintPrint Give us feedback on this pageFeedback form, opens in new window.
Access key details Skip to main content Home News Sitemap Search Website help Complaints Terms and conditions Website feedback