Herefordshire Council has signed a half-million-pound contract to “accelerate its digital transformation journey” and improve customer services.

The £490,000 deal with international professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), consists of £428,300 from the council’s reserves “to develop and deliver a digital and customer services strategy”, plus a further contingency of £61,700.

The outlay was authorised in July by Coun Liz Harvey, cabinet member for finance, corporate services and planning.

A council report at the time justifying the expenditure said “the customer journey in engaging with the council is currently fragmented and delivered in a variety of ways across all teams”.


One intended outcome is that the council will provide “24/7 services that can be accessed online, moving away from traditional 9-5 access”, according to the report.

It says the first two stages of the three-stage process will each take 12 weeks. “Once stage 2 is completed, a further decision will be taken which will set out future investment costs,” it explains.

Meanwhile, the council has begun trialling an “an annual leave trading scheme” for staff this month.

This allows employees to request to “purchase” up to three days’ extra leave from their salaries, and is intended to “promote employee wellbeing whilst also positively contributing to recruitment”, the council said.