Barnsley Metropolitan Civic Council requested a comprehensive audit of the way it communicated with schools in its catchment area in order to identify the strengths and weaknesses of its current approach.
The audit included an analysis of all existing on and offline communications activity, one-to-one interviews with local authority staff, and focus groups with head teachers and other local educators. Freshwater then developed and implemented a strategic communications plan which tackled the problems faced by the council and responded to the needs of schools within the borough, as identified by the audit.
The results of the campaign included an improved relationship between schools and the local education authority. It also led to clarity over which channels of communication were effective, therby reducing the amount of redundant information and putting greater emphasis on electronic communication, such as an intranet, to improve access to information while minimising costs.