Breaking News! Bloom Launches UK’s First Public-Sector-Dedicated S2P Platform

In exciting news today, Bloom Procurement Services, in partnership with JAGGAER, has launched the UK’s first source-to-pay procurement solution specifically for the public sector. Since 2012, Bloom has been bringing together a community of buyers and suppliers to help the public sector buy professional services better. It exclusively operates the NEPRO professional services framework on behalf of NEPO (North East Procurement Organisation), which was set up to help the public sector buy professional services and manage spend whilst achieving better outcomes and improving value.

Spend Matters has been watching Bloom’s progress for some time: the firm has recently gone through a period of very rapid growth, as more and more public sector organisations, not just local authorities, have seen the benefits of the Bloom model for managing professional services spend through NEPRO. The rapid growth brought a flurry of new hires, particularly to the top team, and the firm has been working hard over the past 12 months (and more) to make sure that processes are effective, efficient, consistent and scalable. (And just last month it became the first procurement specialist to achieve the Social Value UK Certificate, and a week ago was shortlisted as the North East Best Places to Work awards.)

Today, the announcement of a technology platform specifically customised to the needs of the public sector, offering customers a source-to-pay solution, is another successful step towards streamlining the relationships between the three key parties: the customer, the supplier and Bloom. Because public sector organisations have so many national and European Union procurement regulations to comply with, including (for now) publication of all tenders above a certain value in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU), they are striving to adopt procurement best practices from the private sector to maximise process efficiencies and improve outcomes while driving down costs. This platform “will enable robust and tailored supplier onboarding and ongoing management, whilst providing enhanced functionality for spend controls, spend management, specification development, evaluation and payment. In addition, the platform will offer the flexibility needed to evolve and respond to ongoing demands in the public sector,” says the press release.

Bloom first approached JAGGAER, the world’s largest, still-independent spend management firm, in August 2018 to develop the solution. It is now being rolled out across Bloom’s customer and supplier base via a phased approach. Bloom currently works with more than 320 central and local government departments and government agencies such as the NHS, providing access to a growing network of over 6,500 suppliers.

Amabel Grant, chief technology officer at Bloom Procurement Services said: “Bloom have a unique set of challenges, we are growing at a rate of 80-90% of spend under management per year and we are significantly changing our service offering and capability. We needed a platform that was both scalable and flexible to incorporate our specific workflow and approach to procurement … We selected the JAGGAER ONE platform because we wanted to partner with industry leaders in procurement technology and wanted to work with an organisation that understands the unique challenges of public sector procurement. JAGGAER fully met these demanding criteria.”

Richard Hogg, managing director at JAGGAER, commented: “The combination of Bloom public sector expertise and JAGGAER technology will provide public sector procurement organisations with a fast and robust solution to deliver better value to users of public services, taxpayers, and other stakeholders.”

Read the press release here and we’ll have more coverage on the solution in the coming days.

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