Met to stop buying paper

22 September 2011

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22 September 2011 | Adam Leach

The Metropolitan Police aims to pass on the responsibility of buying paper to the Cabinet Office’s Efficiency and Reform Group (ERG), according to its director of procurement.

Speaking at the eWorld Purchasing and Supply conference yesterday, Lee Tribe told an audience of procurement professionals: “My ambition for the Met is for it not to buy paper. Where there are generic things that can be bought by John Collington’s team, we would look to do that.”

Tribe told SM that while items such as cars for the Met required specific capabilities and therefore would not be suited to central purchasing, generic car components would be, and he and his team were in the process of identifying every item that could be bought collaboratively in order to benefit from economies of scale. As well as ERG, Tribe is also looking to team up with other regional police forces and purchase certain items nationally as a force.

During his speech at the conference, which was focused on e-procurement, he explained that in order for businesses to get the best out of technological advancements you have to have “the right processes, strategy and people or you will still fundamentally fail”. He added: “It's no good having a sexy system if nobody can use it.”

Back in April, Tribe told SM that he is confident that he and his procurement team of 74 will be able to cut costs at the Met by £20 million, doubling the target he was set earlier in the year, by implementing strict demand management and buying collaboratively. This is critical to ensuring the force meets its strategic goal of keeping London safe, he said.

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