02 December 2004 | Cara Whitehouse
Within local government procurement, Dr Andrew Larner has been appointed director of the South East Centre of Excellence and Julian Morley has been appointed director of the South West Centre of Excellence.
The nine regional centres, being set up by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, are to advise on procurement as well as other processes to help local government reach their efficiency savings targets as set out by the chancellor, Gordon Brown, in his July spending review.
Larner gains influence over a £4 billion spend across 74 local authorities in the south east. He joins the centre after establishing and running the Local Government Information House, a subsidiary of the Improvement and Development Agency.
Morley, who is a trained electronics and electrical engineer, specialises in project management, sourcing and change management. Most recently, he spent six years as a principal consultant with management consultancy PRTM.
The government is hoping that the centres will pull together more joined-up procurement across all councils in England, helping them save at least 2.5 per cent of their budgets, each of the three years to 2007-08 (see News
, 18 November).