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Home > Revolutionising Year-End Service Procurement for Local Authorities
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Shaun Toner, Client Engagement Officer for Matrix Milestone, shares how you can maximise your Service Procurement and end the Financial Year on a high.
In the last four months in my new role here at Matrix, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative impact that informed, well-managed Services Procurement has had on local authorities across the UK. With the current financial year ending for many central Government departments, agencies, and other public bodies funded by Parliament, as well as most local authorities and NHS trusts, the pressure to secure critical goods and services intensifies. This is where the concept of statements of work emerges as a strategic solution to help local authorities. The benefits include streamlined processes, optimised resource allocations, and delivering value to their communities by maximising public benefit.
SoWs, unlike traditional contracts, prioritise outcomes and performance over prescriptive methodologies or deliverables. This flexibility empowers local authorities to adapt to evolving requirements and seize opportunities that arise during the final months of the financial year.
With time ticking away, the ability to quickly procure essential services is crucial. As a leading service procurement platform, Matrix Milestone allows us to expedite the procurement process, eliminating the lengthy procedures often associated with traditional contracts through direct awards or mini-competitions, whilst also ensuring compliance with critical public sector procurement regulations around fair and open competition and opening up of supply opportunities. This allows local authorities to respond promptly to emerging needs and ensure that valuable resources are not lost due to delays.
Each procurement project is unique, and SoWs cater to these specific needs. They allow organisations to tailor the procurement process and contract terms and to align perfectly with the project’s objectives; and constraints and stay in control of delivery. This tailored approach ensures that local authorities secure the most suitable solutions for their communities with their chosen suppliers whilst staying PCR compliant.
Traditional contracts often fixate on specific deliverables and methodologies, hindering adaptability and innovation. SoWs, on the other hand, emphasise the desired outcomes and performance expectations. This approach empowers local authorities to flexibly select suppliers based on their capabilities to achieve desired results. This enables them to respond promptly to emerging needs and seize opportunities that arise during the final months of the financial year without being some of the, at time excessive, red tape of rigid procurement processes and less flexible frameworks.
SoWs foster a collaborative spirit between local authorities and suppliers. Open communication, regular reviews, and shared performance expectations create a platform for continuous improvement and innovation. This collaborative approach ensures that both parties are aligned toward achieving the desired outcomes, ultimately benefiting the communities they serve. Furthermore, as local authorities continue to strive for community engagement, the Matrix Milestone services procurement platform enables, and actively promotes, connectivity to, and for, SME suppliers from within the Local Authority. This is very often overlooked by some of the more conventional national framework models.
The feedback I have had is that our service at Matrix Milestone has been ‘a game-changer for procurement teams with little or no resources’. It’s allowed them to quickly procure the services needed without getting bogged down in the administrative burden. This has allowed my buyers to focus on achieving real outcomes for their communities, which is what matters.
By allowing procurement exercises to focus on outcomes rather than just the purchase price, SoWs encourage suppliers to prioritise value-added services and continuous improvement. This approach not only ensures that local authorities receive the most out of their budget but also minimises budget creep.