About this resource

The Programme Management Office was established between the Department of Health (opens new window), ADASS (opens new window) and the LGA (opens new window) to oversee the Care Act (2014) reforms. They commissioned Think local Act Personal (TLAP) to develop a range of materials. These support councils and other people and groups to put the Care Act into practice.

This resource is all about co-production. Co-production is an important theme throughout much of the statutory guidance for the Act. This explains all the things that councils should think about to make sure they are working in the way the new Act says they should. This includes encouraging councils to seriously think about using co-production in their approach to market shaping and commissioning, which is described in the guidance as a "shared endeavour". This resource explains how councils can do this, drawing on a range of evidence of innovative practice and incorporating advice and examples to illustrate the steps that can be taken to make progress.

The resource was researched and developed for TLAP by the New Economics Foundation (NEF), Jo Kidd Consultancy and Tricia Nicoll Consulting. The project involved:

  • Reviewing existing materials and guidance about market shaping, collaboration, commissioning and co-production.
  • Conducting telephone interviews with social care and health commissioners, people and organisations who provide support (support providers), user-led organisations, people with lived experience and carers.
  • Collecting examples of good practice.

Throughout the process, a Task and Finish Group met three times. The co-chairs of these meetings were:

Bill Davidson, TLAP National Co-production Advisory Group member and Sharon Allen, Chief Executive of Skills for Care

The aim of the Task and Finish Group was to:

  • show co-production in action and provide real life examples,
  • play an active part in agreeing the type and format of the guidance,
  • review the progress of the work,
  • keep up to date with other things that were going on that might affect the work,
  • comment on materials in development and help to test and improve the work, and;
  • make sure that a range of different views - commissioners, providers (organisations) and people with care and support needs - were included in the guidance.

The aim of the resource is to provide information and guidance for anyone affected by the Care Act, including people who use services, families, carers, organisations who provide services and people who commission services.

This resource supports commissioning standards set out in Commissioning for Better Outcomes: A Route Map (opens new window). This work has been jointly published in prototype form in 2014 by the University of Birmingham, ADASS, the LGA, DH and Think Local Act Personal. In particular, it focuses on the key activities that could support progress around the "inclusive" and "well led" standards. At the end of each commissioning standard, there is space to think about what needs to be done (actions) to meet that particular standard. This resource aims to help commissioners think about these actions by looking at the way commissioning happens at the moment and suggesting practical ways to improve.