“What Works”: iNetwork Innovation Awards 2015

Title: Connecting Procurement in Greater Manchester

Organisation(s): STAR Procurement

Author: Mark Pearson

Date: 11/10/2015

Service area*1*: 830. Procurement Policy, 369. Approved suppliers

Description of project

STAR Procurement, established February 2014, is the ground breaking shared procurement service connecting procurement between Stockport, Trafford and Rochdale Councils. The objectives of STAR are:STAR - USPSGM

1. Efficiency:

• Achieving economies of scale through maximising/leveraging volumes to realise savings

• Improving social value outcomes

• Delivering demonstrable value for money

• Contributing to efficiency improvements through procurement of excellent, cost effective services

• Modernising and simplifying processes to develop a standardised approach and a better experience for customers & suppliers alike

• Continuous improvement

2. Capacity:

• Providing wider category management capacity and capability

• Improve training, recruitment and retention of procurement professionals

3. Markets:

• Maximise supplier relationships (getting the best from suppliers, particularly local and SMEs)

• Increase competition and innovation

Strong senior level commitment and consistent support from Members has driven STAR’s integration. It has created a ‘one business’ culture able to drive change and promote continuous improvement. This determination to succeed has been matched by the commitment, hard work and ambition, demonstrated by the STAR team.

What makes this initiative remarkable?

STAR is an exemplar of what can be achieved through partnership and connected working , when it is driven by a clear vision & supported by dedicated leadership. Despite their different political hues, Stockport, Trafford and Rochdale Councils have worked with unprecedented cooperation to take a ‘leap of faith’ to deliver a new service model for local government procurement which is able to respond to diminishing public funding and reach beyond the obvious efficiencies

The scale of the practical challenge to bring together three established teams, connecting differing cultures, systems and working practices into a ‘one vision’ organisation cannot be overstated. However, in just over a year STAR has created a professional team with a strategic category management approach, underpinned by a single Procurement Strategy, with standardised Contract Procedure Rules and an increasingly recognised and trusted brand

STAR has established a model which provides resilience and sustainability for the procurement service with the potential to be adopted by others. Further the model demonstrates an effective framework for the delivery of other types of professional services with the potential to be replicated to meet spending challenges ahead.

What has the project achieved?

STAR has connected with commissioners across 3 Councils, 250 suppliers & awarded 184 contracts

By end of March 2016, £7.5m savings will have been delivered for STAR Councils

As well as delivering its core service, STAR has achieved a single set of CPRs for the 3 Councils and trained over 180 service managers

STAR’s business model is committed to driving connected procurement across the whole of the public sector and improving engagement with commissioners & the whole supply chain (e.g. GMCA, iNetwork Connected Procurement Group, Health, GMP, Schools, Business Forums, 3rd Sector)

STAR is creating stronger connections between non-procurement officers across the three Councils

Skills analysis and training have been used to ensure that a consistent approach is delivered across the board and this unified approach is being shared with colleagues across the three Councils

Customer Service questionnaires are used to drive continuous improvement; over 88% of clients agree/strongly agree that the service from STAR is good

STAR continues to contribute strategically to public sector reform across GM and is looking forward to ever closer connectivity with clients, suppliers and new partners to deliver an exemplar procurement service.

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For more information please contact: Shelley Heckman shelley.heckman@tameside.gov.uk