14 February 2007 | Paul Snell
The OGC is to ask the private sector for help conducting its procurement capability reviews.
Speaking at a press conference last week, Sally Collier, the OGC's executive director of smarter procurement, said: "The key is the people we are going to get to do this and they will be sourced from both the public and private sector."
The OGC announced its intention to carry out procurement capability reviews of all government departments in its Transforming government procurement report, published last month (News, 1 February).
The reviews will aim to identify the level of procurement capacity in each department and find out if they are meeting standards on value for money. The reviews will be modelled on those conducted by cabinet secretary Sir Gus O'Donnell.
Collier said that the format for the reviews had not yet been finalised. "We are trying to pitch it somewhere in the middle," she said. "It has to be deep enough to get to the issues. We are currently tackling how we are going to measure this. You could say the review is the easiest part. Just as much attention will have to be put on it when it has been completed."
John Oughton, outgoing chief executive at the OGC, said the capability reviews would begin with a pilot review in March at the Department for Education and Skills. "We haven't managed our buyers as a cadre," he added. "We need to make sure that our best people are working on our best projects."
Oughton also revealed at the conference that he made his decision to step down from his post last autumn, because he did not want to serve another full term at the agency.