Feeds

Public sector could save billions through shared services

That's 15 hospitals, 30 secondary schools, 50 primary ...

The essential guide to IT transformation

The government could save up to £40bn over the next decade by sharing services across public sector human resources and finance functions, researchers claims.

The BuyIT Best Practice Network, which has been working with the government on take-up of shared services, makes the estimate in a best practice guide published this week.

It calculates that government finance and HR services alone cost £9bn a year more than is necessary, the equivalent of 15 new hospitals, 200 miles of motorway, 30 new secondary and 50 primary schools each year.

The guidance says that to contribute to savings public sector bodies should consider sharing services that are common across different sectors, such as IT, finance and procurement.

By standardising processes such as these, it says will result in greater efficiency and less duplication or overlap between different agencies.

To begin with, the guidance says public sector agencies should carry out assessments of possible shared service partners to establish a list of organisations with similar aims.

Depending on factors such as the size of the organisations involved and the desired outcomes of partnership working, the guidance says there are a number of different commercial structures that can be applied to shared services.

These include the unitary model, where one single organisation consolidates and centralises a business service, the joint initiatives model, where two or more bodies set up and operate shared services and outsourcing, where a third party takes on the running of a department’s service.

Once a model has been agreed, the guidance recommends benchmarking to enable organisations to learn from each other and continue improving.

However it warns these should be used "with caution" as benchmarking data can sometimes be unreliable.

Shared services is a central theme of the Cabinet Office’s Transformational Government strategy, through which it hopes to modernise services and save money,

In an interview with eGov monitor, David Myers, director of the shared services programme in the Cabinet Office, said: "There is every reason to suggest that front line services (particularly within local government), can benefit significantly from a sharing approach. Sharing is now implicit within our Transformational Government Strategy, and requires a major cultural shift across Government."

Related links

BuyIT: Shared Services in the Public Sector
Interview with David Myers

Copyright © eGov monitor Weekly

eGov monitor Weekly is a free e-newsletter covering developments in UK eGovernment and public sector IT over the last seven days. To register go here.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Hello, police, El Reg here. Are we a bunch of terrorists now?
Do Brits risk arrest for watching beheading video nasty? We asked the fuzz
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.