Barnet Council to outsource procurement to Capita

7 December 2012

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7 December 2012 | Anna Reynolds

Barnet Council has confirmed Capita as its preferred bidder for a £320 million, 10-year deal that will see corporate procurement, customer services, HR and IT outsourced to the provider from next year.

It is expected that £125 million will be saved over the lifetime of the customer services contract, with £46.9 million from procurement, £70.1 million from core services and £8.4 million the on collection of council tax and other debts.

Both category management and transactions are being outsourced, while some elements of social care procurement will remain in-house.

A spokesperson for Barnet Council said “a handful” of job losses will occur in the first year of the contract while up to 200 posts may be relocated elsewhere in the UK over the coming years.

Leader of Barnet Council, councillor Richard Cornelius said: “As the spending review made clear, we are in for several more years of public sector austerity, and these savings on our back office costs will mean that we will have £120 million to spend on public services in Barnet which we would not otherwise have. This will help to protect frontline services such as social care and libraries.”

Capita will also make an £8 million upfront investment in technology, offering every resident in the borough an ‘Amazon’ style account with the council that can be used to link a range of services including parking permits and allotment fees.

Cornelius added: “The combination of a saving to the taxpayer of a million pounds a month, alongside an upfront investment in improving the service makes this a very, very good deal for the Barnet taxpayer.”

Capita were selected after an 18-month process in which they competed against BT in the final tender.

The contract is part of a wider programme called ‘One Barnet’ which has seen several changes in the way the council runs services such as bringing recycling in-house and setting up a council-owned trading company to provide adult social care and housing advice services. Legal services are now provided through a joint service with Harrow Council and next year Barnet will decide whether to outsource regulatory services including administration of the planning service.

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