Since the launch in June 2016, the MAX toolkit has expanded considerably and now contains over 50 guides, tools and training resources.

These were developed in response to the feedback and requests we have accumulated during the course of our research activities and consultations with local authority (LA) staff [see the MAX working paper for an overview]. However, we were concerned that the size of the toolkit made it difficult to navigate.

Being mindful of the increasing pressure on LA staff to deliver more with less time and resources, we wanted to ensure that the MAX toolkit was comprehensive, but also quick and easy to use.

The MAX toolkit therefore underwent a major transformation during the summer of 2017.


The MAX toolkit still provides all the original tools and training resources; these, however, can now be accessed via the online guides for the three main elements; planning, analysis and interpretation, and reporting.

The guides have been simplified to focus on the key activities that are required to transform ASCS or PSS SACE data into meaningful management information.

These activities are summarised in the table below, along with the relevant MAX guides.

To support and encourage you to further explore and use the MAX toolkit, we have written – and will continue to write – short blogs about the individual elements (e.g. guides, tools).

The first of these, which outlines why you should read the MAX planning guide, can be accessed here. An overview of the other blogs we have written so far can be found here.

Disclaimer: The research on which this blog is based is commissioned and funded by the Policy Research Programme in the Department of Health. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the Department.