Analysis of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets approach to procurement of a strategic partnership for ICT and corporate services, employing 615 staff. Reveals that there was no evidence of an options or business case prior to the start of procurement. Highlights the limitations of strategic partnerships and the potential impact on the local economy if services are located elsewhere. Proposes an alternative approach to service improvement.
Analysis of proposed PPP Strategic Partnerships
Analysis of proposed PPP Strategic Partnerships
- UK outsourcing expands despite high failure rates – PPP Strategic Partnerships Database 2012-2013, Dexter Whitfield
The number of PPP strategic partnerships has increased 35% in just two years with 18 additional contracts valued at £8bn. 60 contracts are currently operating, four were terminated and one completed the contract term, but was not renewed. A further two are being terminated in 2014. Strategic partnerships originated in ICT and corporate services, but have extended into planning, education, police, fire and rescue and property services. The failure rate is very high - nearly 1 in 4 contracts are either terminated, reduce scope as services are brought back in-house, and/or suffer major financial and operational problems. Savings, new business and new jobs targets continue to be illusive.
- Bedfordshire: Failing Best Value - The implications and alternatives to strategic partnership (2000)
Critical analysis of the County Council’s plan to outsource ICT and corporate services in a strategic partnership. Provides evidence that the Council is failing in its Best Value statutory duties in the content and process of reviews and the duty to consult. Details how the Council merged Best Value into procurement, a critical analysis of strategic partnerships, a review of current ICT contract performance, an impact assessment and alternatives.
- Strategic Partnership in Crisis
Bedfordshire County Council agreed a £267m Strategic Service-Delivery Partnership with HBS Business Services Group in June 2001 and transferred 550 staff to HBS. Bedfordshire UNISON commissioned the Centre to undertake an evaluation of the Strategic Partnership. The study revealed that the partnership was in crisis and had failed to deliver. The contract was terminated in August 2005.
- PPP Briefing: Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships and Outsourced Shared Services Projects
This 20-page Briefing, commissioned by Northumberland, Durham and Northamptonshire UNISON branches, is a summary for elected members, staff and service users of the current evidence against SSPs and outsourcing of shared services projects It covers finance, savings and investment; accountability and transparency of JVCs; performance; risks levels; employment and job creation; and in-house capability to transform services.
- Public Private Partnerships: Confidential ‘Research’, A Critique of the Audit Commission’s study of Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships by Dexter Whitfield
A highly critical assessment of the Audit Commission’s recent report, For Better, For Worse, on Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships. It finds ten fundamental flaws ranging from inadequate methodology, no evidence base, employment issues ignored, no audit of private sector investment and no comparison of an alternative in-house approach. The Commission’s claim that the information on which its findings are based is “commercially confidential” makes a mockery of transparency, performance management, democratic accountability and community engagement. The second section of the report uses quotes from the Audit Commission report to highlight the shortcomings in more detail.
- Southwest One: Lessons and New Agenda for Public Services in the South West
Somerset County Council and Taunton Deane District Council signed a £400m Strategic Service-delivery Partnership contract with IBM in September 2007. The Joint Venture Company, Southwest One, is the first SSP to have a framework agreement to enable other local authorities and public bodies to obtain services bypassing the procurement process. It is also the first to potentially include a Police Authority as a partner (Avon and Somerset Police Authority negotiating to join the partnership) and the first to combine secondment with a 10-year assurance to staff in the founding authorities.
This report exposes the unprecedented use of commercial confidentiality in the procurement process, identifies effective ways for UNISON to respond to the new agenda and ensure a good industrial relations framework in Southwest One. It also proposes regional and national public policy changes to improve the accountability and transparency of options appraisal and procurement processes.
- Somerset ISiS or Crisis? An Assessment of the proposed Strategic Service-delivery Partnership with IBM
The report is critical of: the unprecedented degree of secrecy in a public sector project; the continual overuse of commercial confidentiality by the ISiS project team; the lack of public consultation and public debate; the lack of rigorous scrutiny of the project, to ensure the protection of public services and allay public concerns. The report raises major questions about the way the ISiS project has been managed; the absence of any form of public impact assessment of the project; and the adequacy of the proposed retained client structure and governance arrangements. It was commissioned by Somerset County and Taunton Deane DC UNISON branches.
- Cardiff Council’s Transformation Strategy: An assessment and the case for a new approach to Public Service Reform
Examines Cardiff Council’s transformation ‘insourcing’ strategy consisting of four major strategic partnerships with the private sector. The assessment, commissioned by Cardiff UNISON, examines service driven verses ‘customer centric service delivery’, the lack of citizen and community involvement and the problems of top-down budget dominated transformation. It proposes an alternative transformation strategy that is substantive and sustainable, protects and improves the quality of service, achieves a better balance between transformational change and budget objectives, involves staff and trade unions in the transformation process and protects the quality of employment.
- Oldham Strategic Service Delivery Partnership
Executive Summary of a detailed study into Oldham MBC's planned Strategic Service Delivery Partnerships with HBS and Mouchel Parkman. The key findings include:
The job creation figures are highly questionable, many are not new jobs because they are part of planned major infrastructure projects in Oldham and Mouchel Parkman’s plan is to create a monopoly supply of professional and technical services.
Despite the rhetoric, the contribution of the SSDP to community cohesion is minimal.
The regeneration effect of a Business Centre is overstated.
The SSDP will make a very limited contribution to Oldham’s economy.
The SSDP is designed to meet the needs of the market rather than the strategic social and economic needs of Oldham – a point admitted by the Council’s advisers. (January 2007)
- Social and Economic Audit: Oldham Strategic Service Delivery Partnership
Assesses Oldham's planned Strategic Service Delivery Partnership and shows that the project falls well short of the targets and claims made for community cohesion, regeneration and job creation.
- Social, Economic and Environmental Audit of Salford
The Social, Economic and Environmental Audit provided detailed evidence of the potential impact of a Strategic Service-delivery Partnership on the community, local economy, labour market and sub-regional economy. It included a detailed analysis of the residential location of staff and the impact of employment change. The report included an assessment of the proposals on community well-being and on particular groups in the community. In August 2001, the city council decided not to outsource services and to continue with its in-house improvement programme.
- No Corporate Takeover of Council Services
Newcastle City Council
Part 1 makes the case for in-house capacity for change management, explaining how services could be reconfigured, how this could be financed and how corporate objectives could be achieved. Part 2 explains BT's performance – its strategic blunders, outsourcing, cuts and closures (June 2002).
- An alternative to Privatisation by Partnership
A New Vision for Local Government in Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire for Milton Keynes Council and Northamptonshire County Council UNISON Branches
- Contract Capital of the North?
The case against a proposed Strategic Services-delivery Partnership in Middlesbrough.
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