Thomas Bridge 10 September 2014

Ministers urged to ‘slow down’ on outsourcing more public services

Ministers urged to ‘slow down’ on outsourcing more public services image

The Government has been advised to ‘slow down’ on outsourcing more public services, as polls suggest widespread uncertainty surrounding accountability.

A survey undertaken by Populus for the Institute of Government found half of those questioned felt ‘no-one’ takes responsibility when problem arise in outsourced public services.

In a report published today, the think tank said political parties would now need to focus on fixing ‘broken and underperforming’ public service markets.

It also called on ministers to ‘show that government is in control’ by sharing information on the costs and performance of service providers with the public and Parliament. According to the think tank, this approach would also ‘increase the focus on ensuring value for money’.

Publishing its Programme for effective government, the Institute of Government said more complex outsourcing projects ‘often underperform’ due to ‘perverse’ contractual incentives, ‘weak public sector oversight’ and a lack of transparency and competition.

Calls were also issued for greater scrutiny of new outsourcing deals – in particular those costing over £100m - ‘to make sure they are sensible’.

‘Small improvements to public sector processes can have big impacts,’ the report said.

‘Making such improvements needs good organisational leadership; solid information on customers and costs; a willingness to experiment (and fail); and a steady flow of ideas and information about what works from frontline workers, service users and communities.’

The Brownfield Land Release Fund image

The Brownfield Land Release Fund

To what extent does this early initiative of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities deliver on the ‘levelling up’ agenda? Lawrence Turner reports.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Career Grade Planning Officer

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£27978 - £37722 per annum + n/a
Career Grade Planning Officer - West Area and East Area Team The Royal Borough of Greenwich continues to faces an unprecedented growth agenda in terms England, London
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Highway Engineer - Reactive Maintenance

Bracknell Forest Borough Council
£35,354 - £40,506 incl. LWA, plus £963 car allowance
We make a difference to the environment we live in. Come and help us manage our highway infrastructure. Bracknell, Berkshire
Recuriter: Bracknell Forest Borough Council

Lifeguard (South Woodham Ferrers Leisure Centre)

Chelmsford City Council
Grade 3 - Starting at £18, 291 per annum, and rising to £19,515
South Woodham Ferrers is one Chelmsford City Council’s four leisure facilities, offering a variety of sporting activities where there is something ... Chelmsford, Essex
Recuriter: Chelmsford City Council

Car Park Attendant

Chelmsford City Council
Grade 3 - Starting at £18,291 per annum, rising to £19,515
We are seeking an enthusiastic and motivated individual to join our Car Park team to support with the day-to-day running of our 19 City Centre car ... Chelmsford, Essex
Recuriter: Chelmsford City Council

Lifeguard (Riverside Leisure Centre)

Chelmsford City Council
Grade 3 - Starting at £18, 291 per annum, rising to £19,515
Riverside Leisure Centre is Chelmsford City Council’s flagship leisure facility, offering a variety of sporting activities where there is something... Chelmsford, Essex
Recuriter: Chelmsford City Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue