New BravoSolution paper – Ten Strategies for Public Sector Procurement

BravoSolution have published a new Paper – available to download free on registration here.

It’s written by a highly international group of Bravo staff from the US, UK, Italy and France, including Richard Hogg, the UK General Manager, and it’s called  Ten Strategies for Best-in-Class Public Sector Procurement. The ten strategies are:

1. Transform the purchasing culture

2. Start with spend analysis

3. Drive political and local government initiatives

4. Elevate supplier selection

5. Make a firm supplier commitment

6. Centralise procurement and sourcing

7. Collaborate and share best practices

8. Facilitate technology and process adoption

9. Move beyond the technology: focus on the people, process and skills

10. Partner with the right team

As well as some good thoughtful advice - such as the emphasis on offering firm commitments to get the best value supplier responses - there are short case studies from various countries, such as the Welsh Government strategic sourcing programme, which has supported the local economy as well as providing value for money.

It’s not at all a sales pitch – even when it talks about selecting the right technology partner, the advice is very sound and unbiased – such as  “ensure that the proposals meet your needs, rather than reflecting a vendor’s future product roadmap”.

Where I would slightly take issue with the authors is when they say this.

“Public organisations are all on the same team – with the same mission – and peer collaboration should be natural”.

Many public sector readers will chuckle when they read that! On the same team? Not always, unfortunately. Adjoining councils often hate each other – whether or not they are of different political affiliations. Hospitals actively compete now. Government Agencies battle to increase their share of a limited funding cake.

There’s also a tension, as we’ve said before, between the centralisation agenda – strategy six here is “centralise purchasing and sourcing”, and the whole localism, innovation, and small business agenda. That isn’t fully explored here, although it would be optimistic to hope any author could resolve that in a few paragraphs!

But the report is a good and interesting piece of work, well worth 15 minutes of your time if you’re involved or interested in the public sector, and we may well return to some of the points at a later date.

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