The Land Registry has published its Annual Report and Accounts for the year 2011/12.
The report highlights a solid year of performance against targets, the completion of major structural changes, responding to the needs of customers and embracing new responsibilities.
During the last year, the Land Registry joined the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and became a founder member of the Public Data Group. This has led to a focus on the Government’s objective of improving the accessibility of public data and supporting economic growth. Monthly Transaction Data was released in January 2012 for free for the first time. Since March monthly Price Paid Data has been released.
The Land Registry reports a surplus of £67.8 million in 2011/12. This follows three years of deficits totalling £163.6 million. As a result of the healthier financial position, a new fee order will be implemented in 2012/12 which will reduce fees by an average of 10%.
Eleven of the 14 performance targets were achieved, and there was a 97% customer satisfaction rating. This is the highest since independent surveys began. Targets for casework speed, quality and accuracy were all met. The number of titles on the Land Register topped 23 million.
The Register Extract Service took the top prize in the Delivering Business Value and E-Commerce category at the Real IT Awards. Electronic services also expanded, and four more services have been made available through Business Gateway and enhancements made to the portal.
The Accelerated Transformation Programme was completed, which saw the workforce at the Land Registry fall by 44% since 2008, with underlying running costs dropping by 35%. As well as this, governance was revised with a new independent non-executive Chair and a restructured Land Registry Board.
Malcolm Dawson, Chief Land Registrar and Chief Executive commented:
“Land Registry has changed for the better over the past year. That’s not just my opinion- it’s what our customers are telling me too.
“Nearly 80 per cent of our work is now managed via dedicated customer teams. The feedback has been positive. We’re more open, flexible and focused on our customer needs. The improvement in our customer satisfaction score to 97 per cent over the year including an outstanding 99 per cent in the last quarter is a testament to the work that we’ve done towards becoming a more proactive and responsive organisation that focuses on the relationship with its customers.
“We have completed a tough restructuring programme which began following the economic downturn in 2008. We closed several of our offices, ran a voluntary severance exercise and completed the outsourcing of our facilities and file stores. It’s been sad to see valued colleagues leave the organisation but these changes were necessary and we did our best to manage them sensitively. We have restored financial stability and now expect to reduce our fees later this year, passing the benefit to our customers.
“Alongside structural changes, ministerial responsibly moved to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) as a precursor to becoming a founder member of the Public Data Group as part of the Government’s objectives for improving accessibility of public data and supporting economic growth. While our central purpose remains intact, we are now also focused on our new role in deploying our resources and assets to the benefit of the economy and society at large.
"Overall we have a great foundation to build on over the coming year — a historic one for us as we celebrate our 150th anniversary. There are some real challenges to come but I am confident that we will meet them to the benefit of our customers, our partners, our employees and the wider economy."
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