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Witness Service Improvement Programme - Citizens Advice

What was the challenge?

Citizens Advice (CA) was awarded the Witness Service contract by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). It therefore had one year to deliver an improved service to more witnesses by transforming the service it provided, its organisational structure, training, and by moving from a paper-based system to a digital solution. 

CA established a transformation programme to improve the service to over 200,000 witnesses supported annually across England & Wales, deliver a flexible staff and volunteer organisational structure, implement a digital solution to capture and record data, and finally to position itself as the MoJ's first choice organisation to deliver the Witness Service. This programme had to be delivered in the financial year within a tight budget and in the context of a complex, wide-reaching stakeholder landscape.  

How did we help?

Moorhouse was engaged to be an integral part of the CA team. We supported programme management, developed and implemented the future organisational design, used Agile methodology to manage the creation and deployment of a new digital tool, and provided specialist digital expertise to enhance the overall solution. It was crucial to use best practice change management tools to engage with volunteers and staff, so that they could see the benefits of these changes and ensure that the change would be sustainable.  

What was the impact? 

This programme provided benefits for witnesses, Citizens Advice, and the Ministry of Justice. The new digital solution meant that witnesses only had to provide their information once. In addition, since staff and volunteers had easier access to information, they were able to dedicate more time to witnesses, and particularly to those most vulnerable, with one volunteer supporting throughout the process.  The flexible and resilient organisational structure enabled CA to provide a consistent and improved service nationally and easily link to other Citizens Advice services. By improving the services offered to witnesses, they are able to give their best evidence and fundamentally support the Ministry of Justice to deliver justice.  

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