The Government's top efficiency adviser has praised West Midland senior executives for striving to create a better business environment.

Barry Quirk addressed a CBI lunch and encouraged Midland business leaders to work with local councils to help increase productivity and decrease costs.

The theme of Mr Quirk's speech, Better, Quicker, Cheaper, covered topics including supply management and service procurement.

Mr Quirk is a regular advisor to Whitehall as well as being chief executive of the London Borough of Lewisham.

He said: "A quarter of the total efficiency gains nationally need to be achieved in local government and that's why we are looking for business and local authorities to work together.

"I think people need to move away from the do it yourself culture to a get someone in approach. There needs to be a more mixed economy of service provision."

The Government's target for increasing efficiency is to make nationwide savings of £1 billion per year and this is being comfortably met at the moment. Over the last 19 months £1.9 billion has been saved putting the drive for efficiency ahead of the already ambitious schedule set by the government.

In the latest audit Birmingham City Council was given a two star rating and judged to be "improving well". Mr Quirk suggests the key is to treat efficiency as part of financial management in all institutions.

He said: "Birmingham needs to focus on its overall use of resources."