Supplementary written evidence submitted
Following the evidence Intellect gave to the Public
Administration Select Committee on Tuesday 15 March, we would
like to expand on four points.
1. We referenced a number of best practice procurement
tools that were developed jointly by government and industry,
but have not been adopted widely across government. More detailed
information is enclosed (see appendix). In particular we would
like to highlight:
Toolensuring a government customer is ready to go to market.
Statement of Intentaligning aims and objectives between
customers and suppliers.
contract terms for ICT-enabled change projects (new, "lighter"
version also under development).
These have been developed to improve the chance of
delivering successful business outcomes and reduce the time and
cost of the procurement process to both government and suppliers.
2. We were very concerned about the suggestion
that the technology industry may operate a cartel with no supporting
evidence or information being offered to the committee. Such a
suggestion is not only inaccurate and misleading, but also potentially
damaging to an industry that is a vital part of the UK economy.
We hope that you will share our concern.
We do agree that government's current go-to-market
approach presents significant barriers to new entrants to the
market, especially in terms of the change-averse culture in government
and the preference given to suppliers with UK government experience.
The government needs to reduce these barriers and ensure the system
encourages as many companies as possible to invest in new solutions
that can reform public service delivery.
A public sector market that attracts a range of suppliers,
large and small, will have added benefits in that it will lead
to increased investment and the creation of more high value jobs
in the UK. We highlighted a number of means of achieving such
an environment in our original submission to the PASC, but would
be happy to provide further specifics if desired.
3. The supplier ecosystem is extremely complex,
with companies forming various partnerships and consortia and
with SMEs even using large suppliers as subcontractors in some
instances. We have a number of initiatives in place to facilitate
better working arrangements throughout the supply chain, specifically
to provide opportunities for SMEs.
One example is our Innovation Den, where SMEs pitch
their innovative business propositions to representatives from
central and local government and large suppliers to government.
This has been highly successful to date and has allowed all participants
to better understand and explore the art of the possible.
4. We thought it would be useful to provide some
clarity about Concept Viability (see appendix). This is a service
offered by Intellect to the public sector that enables customers
to consult with a broad range of experts from the technology industry
on future procurements. It provides the industry an opportunity
to comment on a potential procurement before a tender is written,
within the confines of a technology-neutral environment. This
helps the customer to effectively assess the potential risks associated
with specific public sector technology projects before committing
to a particular approach. The service has been used for over 80
public sector projects and is recommended by the National Audit
Please feel free to contact us if you would like
to follow up on these or any other points made in our written
submission or oral evidence.
SUMMARY OF PROCUREMENT TOOLS
All of the following tools were developed jointly
by industry and government.
This is a service offered by Intellect to the public
sector that enables customers to consult with a broad range of
experts from the technology industry on future procurements. It
provides the industry an opportunity to comment on a potential
procurement before a tender is written, within the confines of
a technology-neutral environment. This helps the customer to effectively
assess the potential risks associated with specific public sector
technology projects before committing to a particular approach.
Intellect's Concept Viability service was launched
in December 2003. The service has been used for over 70 public
sector projects and is recommended by the National Audit Office.
The PQT is a tool for government departments to test
the readiness of a major ICT procurement. The PQT includes 20
questions, which aim to measure whether the procurement, government
department, suppliers and leadership are all ready to proceed
to an OJEU competition. It also gives potential suppliers an assurance
about the maturity of the requirement and can inform their decisions
on whether and how to bid for the work.
The Pre-Qualification Tool was published by OGC as
a best practice tool in January 2009. http://www.ogc.gov.uk/About_OGC_news_8952.asp
The JSI is a formal agreement that is reached by
the Senior Responsible Owner and the corresponding Senior Responsible
Industry Executive(s) for a specific project or business change
programme. It is designed to help improve the success rate of
government IT programmes and projects by helping departments and
their suppliers to develop a shared view of:
a programme or project is intended to achieve, in respect of business
outcomes and benefits, if it is to be regarded as a success;
the collective project team will work together to deliver these
potential impact of change on the programme or project (linked
to the desired business outcomes rather than solely the IT).
The Joint Statement of Intent was launched as OGC
best practice in January 2009. http://www.ogc.gov.uk/documents/ppd_it_projects_joint_statement.pdf
As with Pre-Qualification Questionnaires, contract
terms and conditions tend to vary widely across government. The
model agreement is aimed at reducing the amount of time spent
on contract negotiations, which will generate savings for both
government and industry. Intellect is also working closely with
OGC and Partnerships UK to provide additional guidance for the
public sector on implementing model agreements in the form of
a "key issues negotiating guide".
Version 2.3 of the model agreement was published
in August 2009 and the key issues negotiating guide was published
in March 2010.
Version 2.3: http://www.ogc.gov.uk/About_OGC_news_9587.asp
Negotiating guide: http://www.ogc.gov.uk/policy_and_standards_framework_the_negotiating_guide.asp
Traditional contractual agreements operate on an
arms-length supply of technology services. OBAs however focus
on delivering shared outcomes and the supplier is contracted to
directly achieve business outcomes for and with the customer.
Given the strain on public finances, it is essential to have customers
and suppliers who are committed to more than just the delivery
of their services or products and OBAs offer an effective way
to enshrine this principle from the outset.
Intellect's report, "A guide to Outcome-Based
Agreements: a better way to do business", highlights the
preconditions for a successful OBA and the mechanisms to help
ensure a mutually beneficial agreement. It can be accessed on