14 February 2007 | Antony Barton
Fourteen East Midlands councils have set up a three-year framework agreement for temporary staff.
The contact with recruitment firm Comensura, will cover an estimated combined annual spend of £4 million. It could be extended to five years, if the councils are pleased with Comensura's performance. The East Midlands Centre of Excellence (EMCE) forecasts savings of up to 10 per cent each year if the framework is used properly.
Prompted by the Gershon efficiency agenda, the 14 local authorities met early last year to aggregate their demand for temporary staff. The Eastern Shires Purchasing Organisation (ESPO) assisted in the procurement process, together with the EMCE and the OGC.
The contract is available for all UK public service bodies to join. A spokesman for EMCE told supplymanagement.com the organisation was busy promoting the contract to prominent public sector figures across the East Midlands in the hope they would discuss it with their associates nationwide.
ESPO and Comensura will hold an open day on 29 March at the Comensura headquarters in Luton for public sector bodies to discuss the framework agreement and how they can take part.
Last year, the Regional Centres of Excellence (RCE) published a guide for local authorities to control spend on agency staff. London boroughs alone spend more than £500 million a year on temporary staff (Web news, 17 October 2006) and Transforming the Procurement of Temporary, Agency and Interim Staff aimed to deliver annual savings of up to £100 million. A spokesman for RCE said savings generated by the guide could not yet be calculated because it was released so recently.