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This is your gateway to an extensive suite of information, comparative data, research and analytics products and services. They are all designed to help you and your organisation succeed. All local authority transformation projects are made easier with CIPFA benchmarking clubs.

Benchmarking clubs

CIPFA benchmarking clubs look at the key functions affecting efficiency in your organisation such as finance, governance, revenues and benefits, HR, legal and democratic functions.

CIPFA is the market leader in local government comparative data with years of experience. Our team offers you unrivalled expertise and operates to the highest standards.

All our reports are prepared using extensive analysis and robust validation of data. To help you get the maximum benefit from your report, we give you access to all the raw data, plus a tool to help you analyse it further. For further context, we offer a consultancy service to provide insight around financial and other service performance outcomes.

As benchmarking club members, you will be invited to review meetings. These meetings provide an opportunity for you to network with your peers and share advice. 

Customer case study - Informed decisions 

CIPFA data analytics and consulting helped Leeds City Council refine its funding strategy.

"We used CIPFA’s comparative data sets to evaluate cost against performance to ultimately determine robust budgets, a process that had previously been successfully implemented within the authority’s Adult Social Care function. 

The use of metrics and indicators also played a key role in the delivery of a fully balanced budget position for Leeds City Council’s social care division."

Richard Ellis, Head of Finance, Leeds City Council

Leeds city council logo

Download Leeds City Council PDF case study or view case study page

Comparative data sets

We provide the essential data to help you make important business decisions. Our comparative data sets are grouped as follows:

  • Comparative Profiles – compare an authority to a selected group across indicators, collected from key public sector data sources.
  • Corporate Services Benchmarking - supports your organisation by improving key back office functions to maximise efficiency and deliver more services with a reduced budget. By measuring the cost and performance of service delivery, this will enable you to streamline services. Interactive tools video.
  • CFO Insights – is powered by CIPFA and delivered in partnership with Grant Thornton. It is an online analysis tool that gives instant access to insight around the financial performance, socio-economic context and service outcomes for every council in England, Scotland and Wales.
  • Nearest Neighbours Model – is CIPFA's statistical approach to better understanding the similarities and differences between neighbouring authorities in England. The model utilises a database of 41 different indicators to analyse the relationships between English authorities, helping you to assess who you should be benchmarking yourselves against.  
  • Planning Benchmarking Service - this new benchmarking exercise has been created to address radical planning system changes across England and the devolved governments of the regions.
  • Social Care Benchmarking - are streams that support the service that your organisation provides. This includes comparative data for all aspects of adult and children’s social care to help authorities share data in a supportive environment. Interactive tools video
  • VfM Indicators – will assess your organisation’s performance and pinpoint its strengths and weaknesses. HM Treasury specifically recommends collecting and reporting on back-office performance for organisations with more than 250 employees. 
  • VfM Toolkit – an easy to use, visual tool, the VfM Toolkit allows you to track the costs and performance of your services and compare them to your peers. Watch this video to see the VfM Toolkit in action. 
  • Financial Foresight - CIPFA and Grant Thornton have collaborated to create our 'new to market' financial forecasting solution that will help local government decision makers plan for the future.

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How we can help you

Our benchmarking and comparative data set exercises are designed to answer questions such as:

  • How are you performing and are you providing value for money?
  • How does your performance compare with that of peer organisations?
  • Can we learn anything from other organisations?
  • What level of improvement can we realistically expect to make?

All of the above are applicable no matter how your services are delivered, whether in-house, via shared services or contracted out.


  • Almost 100 data sets available, providing you with a one-stop shop for comparative performance data.
  • All areas of local authority activity covered which means that we have something for everyone.
  • Avoid costly mistakes and learn from your peers to reduce your project implementation costs and timescales.
  • CIPFA's over 100 years’ experience means that we understand your issues and challenges.
  • We can link a wide range of additional services to support your complete transformation projects.

Next steps

To discuss which data analytics products best suit your needs, contact us on:

E: or T: 020 7543 5600.

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