Councillors to review council’s management structure


Changes to the senior management structure at West Sussex County Council will be considered by councillors next week as the authority plans ahead for the future.

Members of the Governance Committee are due to debate a proposed structure that scales back the senior management team from eight directors to four new executive director positions, a new commercial director and a new director of economy.

It is also proposed that the Council will continue with the Chief Operating Officer leadership model following a decision in January to make the post of chief executive redundant.

If approved, the changes will begin the process of reducing the management team of the Council, delivering savings and more closely aligning the senior leadership structure to the authority’s core priorities of giving children the best start in life, supporting older residents to live independently for as long as possible and creating a strong and diverse economy.

The proposed new structure also provides a renewed focus on strong and vibrant communities where people are encouraged to help themselves and each other, a new commercial emphasis, and an unrelenting focus on providing quality customer service.

Louise Goldsmith, leader of West Sussex County Council, said: “We are evolving as a local authority as other councils up and down the land are.

“We need to evolve so we can continue to provide quality services to our residents at a time when we have reducing income but increasing demands for the services we provide. Our current structure is not sustainable. A smaller, more agile senior management structure that is flexible enough to adapt to the challenges we face and more commercial in its focus is what we need.

“I’m incredibly proud of our workforce. They’re hardworking, loyal and care about the communities of West Sussex that they serve. But there has never been a more challenging time for local government and it is inevitable that these proposed changes will have an impact on our staff and particularly on our managers.

“However, our frontline services are what matter to our communities and we need to adapt and evolve in order to protect them as much as we can. What matters to us is what works - that services are delivered by the right people, in the right way at the right cost and where we, as a county council, cost the tax payer less.”

WSCC’s Governance Committee will consider the report when it meets on Monday, June 30.

Recommendations that the committee make will be taken to the full meeting of WSCC in July. The full Governance report can be read online at and found by typing Governance Committee into the search box.