Category: In practice

In practice: How can we improve our scrutiny annual reports?

This is a guest post from Catherine Buckley at Knowlsey Council. Thanks Catherine!


Each year we all complete an annual report. Generally speaking they cover the work of the function over the past year, edited highlights, perhaps a bit of impact, feedback/insight and maybe some information on where scrutiny has added value or what the plans are for the future.

When it comes to drafting the report I always do a Google trawl for good ideas or areas where they have done something a bit different with their format/content. Some of the best ones I have seen are easy to understand and really accessible (for non scrutiny people) and they also go beyond a summary report,  being more analytical and using learning from the past year to inform the year ahead.

With the shift to paperless and home working there are now real opportunities to think differently about format as well as content. I’d love to hear from other areas where scrutiny annual reports have been more innovative in their approach, to understand how they were produced and shared and how they involved Members and other stakeholders throughout the process.

Please get in touch if you would like to share some learning on this topic!


Catherine works at Knowsley Council. You can read about their scrutiny annual report here.

Do have any good examples to share or ideas to add or questions to ask? Why not comment on this post.

Or drop Catherine a line on