Executive Director of Resources, London Borough of Enfield
James Rolfe is the Executive Director of Resources for Enfield – making him responsible for the £1.2 billion of annual expenditure on services such as social care, refuse collection and leisure for the borough’s 330,000 residents, visitors and businesses.
The Council’s commitments go further, as James explains, “We want Enfield to be a place where residents are proud to live, where people from all backgrounds are welcomed and where people actively participate in their communities.”
Faced with the challenge of local government funding cuts, James is tasked with reducing costs, increasing productivity and moving into the digital era.
A commercial housing venture Housing Gateway has saved the council over £4 million, and increased ongoing asset ownership. Enfield is also one of the first local authorities in the country to use AI in daily customer service delivery.
The digitalisation, automation and income generation transformation programme has resulted in annual Council savings of over £15 million. “Our library development strategy has been a great example of how we’ve adapted,” James explains. “We reduced costs by 50%, while managing to open 4 hub libraries, sustain 13 community libraries and improve our visiting service.”
Despite his success in the borough, James says he is always learning: “The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know. It’s vital to continue a journey of discovery throughout your career, and you can do that by working closely with others.”