9 April 2010 | Helen Gilbert
Accounting firm KPMG has been called in to review administrative and support services spending at nine government agencies in New Zealand.
The NZ Treasury said the company would investigate spend in procurement, finance, IT, HR, travel and transport, real estate, facilities management, corporate communications, planning and strategy. KPMG will establish baseline performance and cost information and identify opportunities for improvement. The Treasury did not disclose the size of the contract.
The agencies are the Treasury, NZ Transport Agency, Inland Revenue Department, Ministry of Social Development, Housing NZ, Department of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Economic Development, Defence Force and NZ Police.
The benchmarking forms part of the Better Administrative and Support Services (BASS) Programme, which aims to establish how to achieve leading practice for administrative and support services.
John Crawford, Treasury general manager, crown ownership and state sector performance, said: “The first phase of the BASS Programme will help us understand where differences exist across the state sector and then identify areas where it can improve.”
Last summer the NZ government announced plans to overhaul the country's NZ$30 billion (£14 billion) spend on goods and services to boost the economy and end domestic frustration over the country’s purchasing processes.
“In my view we have to make some fundamental changes to the way government procurement is managed,” said NZ’s commerce minister Simon Power.