Information sharing plays a significant role in helping the country’s economy to thrive, by helping people back into work and supporting businesses to grow. The information needed to make this happen spans a wide variety of services, and focuses on taking a holistic approach to a person’s or a business’s situation– for both national and local services involved. This is needed as people who are out of work may encounter other problems relating to not being in employment. These vulnerable people may need the additional support of; housing providers, financial advice, drug and alcohol teams, community police, healthy eating and separation advice. The challengeFor businesses, many different regulatory bodies are engaged in helping a business to perform and to stop bad or illegal traders from operating. Business regulators sharing information may also hold the key to identifying hidden vulnerable people, such as those who have been trafficked or are modern day slaves.Although sharing in these environments may look simple, one of the greatest challenges impacting on both individual and business support is historic ways of working. Traditionally, bodies such as the Department for Work and Pensions (e.g. Job Centres), and business regulators have provided a single service, focused on achieving the sole aims of that body. This means that the people who work for these organisations have to develop new ways of working, but also ways of recording data to make it easy to not only share, but also ensure that people can be recognised by those they are sharing with.The Centre has visited a number of local places to explore the various approaches to holistic support, and written blogs and case studies to share this learning. These include Melton Borough Council, Wigan’s Job and Life Centre and Greater Manchester. Our work with Regulatory Delivery (part of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)In February 2016, the Centre supported Regulatory Delivery, (formerly the Better Regulation Delivery Office) in the delivery of a dedicated workshop for regulatory service practitioners, such as Environmental Heath and Trading Standards. The event aimed to identify cultural barriers limiting information sharing, identify good practice and explore characteristics of good information sharing in regulatory environments. Following this workshop and field interviews which took place with regulators from across the country, the Centre produced a report which made a number of key recommendations for Regulatory Delivery to consider.
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