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23 November 2012 | Anna Reynolds
Value Wales, the procurement team of the Welsh Government, scooped the award for procurement at last night’s Civil Service Awards 2012.
The team was recognised for developing the community benefits policy and encouraging all public sector organisations in Wales to recruit and train unemployed people. Under the policy, public bodies must work with disadvantaged groups and contribute to local communities through education, regeneration and the environment.
Gunther Kostyra, head of policy at Value Wales, said to SM: “It's really wonderful that all the work the Value Wales policy team does on a daily basis to help improve economic regeneration in Wales is now recognised at a UK level.
“We first piloted the community benefits approach in 2003 and seeing it grow into the cornerstone of Welsh Government procurement policy is really rewarding.”
Value Wales has also developed a measurement tool to show the outcomes of completed procurement projects. So far, six have been measured, worth £186 million in contract value. Out of this, 87 per cent has been spent within Wales, creating more than 2,000 jobs and giving 170 disadvantaged people 8,600 weeks of work experience.
For the first time at the ceremony, an award for ‘outstanding service delivery and value for money’ was given by Margaret Hodge, chairman of the Committee of Public Accounts. The winner was the Olympic Delivery Authority.
The other nominees for the procurement award were the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (DECC) green deal procurement and service delivery team. The green deal team has led the move from DECC’s traditional arrangement of funding through grants to a more commercial approach based on competitive tendering. The team has also procured an energy-saving advice call centre, which has generated £40 million in savings over three years.
Civil Service Learning was also nominated for its new model to provide high quality, cost-effective learning across the civil service. Centrally procured learning packages are expected to generate annual savings of £90 million.