RPA boss says agency faces toughest test yet on CAP

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) faces one of the most challenging periods in its history, according to chief executive Mark Grimshaw.

Speaking at the publication of its 2014/15 Business Plan, Mr Grimshaw said the key challenge for 2014/15 would be preparing RPA people and customers for a smooth transition to the new CAP schemes.

Working with Defra to build a computer system to deliver the payments, while maintaining ‘business as usual’ to the high standards customers have come to expect, would also be priorities.

Mr Grimshaw said:
“We have taken the practical decision to maintain our indicators at 2013 levels to focus on preparing our people, our customers and our systems to be ready for the transition to the new, reformed CAP

“There will, however, be no let-up in the drive to maintain our current high levels of customer service and scheme performance while delivering the third year of the Five Year Plan.”

“It will be a tough task but RPA is in a better place than it was last time round. Over the past two years we have completed early a highly successful strategic improvement programme which has stabilised the agency and delivered our best ever performance.

“The result is today’s RPA is a lean, agile and high performing organisation which is ready for the challenges ahead.

“The scale of the Agency’s transformation is recognised by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which has made us responsible for delivery of all EU payments, not just the new Basic Payment Scheme (BPS). The recent announcement by the National Audit Office lifting the third and final qualification on our accounts also demonstrates how far we have come.

“Our priority now is to persuade customers to engage early with the CAP Information Service (CAPIS) online system. They can find out how by looking out for the series of leaflets we are producing as part of the CAP Reform Countdown.
“With the help of the Defra network, our people and our industry partners, we are working hard to make the transition to the new schemes and the new IT as smooth as possible.”

The plan’s headline indicators include achieving an average customer satisfaction score of 8 out of 10 across the year; ensuring that 97 per cent of customers are paid 97 per cent of the fund value by 31 March 2015; and guaranteeing that at least 99 per cent of payments are accurate first time, measured against financial value.

Get Our E-Newsletter - breaking news to your in-box twice a week
Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy
Share.

About The Author