08 January 2003 | David Arminas
Colin Lyne, a past CIPS president, has been appointed to the high-profile post of commercial director at the Department for Constitutional Affairs.
The commercial director's role is the first grade 3 appointment - equal to the former assistant secretary role - to be created for purchasing in central government.
Giving a procurement position such a senior status showed the government was serious about modernising public-sector procurement with the best business methods to make it deliver world-class services, Lyne added.
Lyne is responsible for facilities management on £2 billion of estate assets, including the country's court systems.
He also controls an annual £3 billion procurement budget.
The department spends around £2 billion a year of this on procuring legal services.
"Our budget is around 20 per cent of the entire UK spend on legal services by both private and public organisations," he said.
Lyne came out of retirement four years ago when he joined the civil service in the Lord Chancellor's Department.
Lyne moved into the newly created position at the DCA from being director of facilities management in the Lord Chancellor's Department, which was renamed in a government shake-up last July.
Before his civil service career, Lyne was involved in retail supply chain work, including at Littlewoods, and was a director of commercial services at Essex County Council.
He is also a past chairman of the European Council of Purchasing and Supply.