Archives for May 16th, 2006

SHARED SERVICES

Abstracts, PublicNet: 16 May, 2006

This report from Kable, a provider of public sector research and publishing services, claims that the short term impact of shared service initiatives in the public sector is being greatly exaggerated. There have been estimates of savings of up to £40bn over ten years for the UK public sector from shared services, but the report suggests it is more realistic to assume a long term saving of some 20% – or £2bn – of the estimated annual cost of otherwise providing certain corporate services. The report points out that this lower estimate is broadly in line with the expectations of current public sector projects, and comparable with actual results achieved in commercial organisations.The report estimates that finance and HR represent some 70% of the potential scope for shared services, with a further 10% represented by revenues and benefits, and 20% from miscellaneous, smaller scale and sector-specific initiatives. Over the medium term the report predicts that most of the measurable benefits will be achieved in the back office. The report argues that only about half of corporate services across the public sector are susceptible to a shared services approach. It concludes that given realistic lead times for adoption and achievement of benefits it is likely that shared services can deliver savings in the region of 2.3% of the total £20bn cost of corporate services per annum over the next four years.

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CUTTING THE COST OF PRINTING

Headlines, PublicNet: 16 May, 2006

The public sector spends 650m pounds per annum on print services and the Office of Government Commerce estimates that the bill can be cut by 23m pounds. Working in collaboration with other government organizations it plans to set up a Pan Government Collaborative Print Services Framework Agreement which can be used by all public bodies including agencies and non departmental public bodies. The plan involves bringing together the demand for printing and related services across central and local government and using this combined spending power to reduce the cost of buying print services. The Department for Transport will be the Contracting Authority.There are more than 100,000 buying bodies within the public sector, ranging from large central government departments such as the Department of Work and Pensions to smaller ones such as Department for Culture, Media and Sport with 60 Non Departmental Public Bodies. The Education sector has 25,000 schools, 380 further education colleges and 130 higher education institutions. The Health sector has 10,000 GP surgeries, 500 NHS Trusts and in excess on 1,000 Hospitals. In addition there is the complex Local Government structure of numerous councils plus 149 Local Education Authorities.

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MOVING TOWARDS SEAMLESS HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE

Headlines, PublicNet: 16 May, 2006

A further stage in bringing together health and social care has been marked with the announcement by the Department of Health that it intends to introduce legislation to require local councils to appoint a new lead member for adult services at the next opportunity. The new role will provide strengthened leadership and promote closer integration of health and social care.The new Directors of Adult Social Services will be on equal footing with Directors of Social Services and will be directly accountable to the Chief Executive. They will work in partnership with their counterparts in children’s services and ensure that the social care needs of everyone in the community are considered and are well managed. They will also have responsibility for coordinating the promotion of wellbeing, prevention of social exclusion and protection of vulnerable adults across adult services.

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