January 3, 2013
The latest wheeze from the Government as it looks to ‘streamline’ the public sector’s back-office functions including purchasing is to create two Independent Shared Service Centres as part of the Next Generation Shared Service Plan. Pick through the usual gobbledegook and acronyms and what you will find are some significant developments as The Cabinet Office seeks to save up to £600 million a year in administration costs.
The Next Generation Shared Services Strategic Plan was published last week and announced that two Independent Shared Service Centres (ISSCs) will be created to run functions for central government departments. Under the plans, the ISSCs will mean that the Department for Transport shared service centre, will be outsourced to a private provider. The second ISSC will also be run by a private provider. These ISSCs will take on work for all departments except the Ministry of Defence, HM Revenue & Customs and the Ministry of Justice. The first outsourcing provider is due to be appointed by March, with the provider for the second in place by 2014.
Announcing the strategy, Francis Maude, minister for the Cabinet Office, said: “Sharing services simply makes sense. There is absolutely no need for departments and arms-length bodies to have their own back-office functions, and duplicate efforts, when they can be delivered more efficiently by sharing services and expertise.”