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Outsourcers to search their souls over public sector future

David Bicknell Published 06 April 2018

Global Sourcing Association event on April 26 plans to ask and answer ‘tough questions’ over use of the private sector to drive public sector advancements


The outsourcing industry will undergo an in-depth self-examination of its ‘raison d’etre’ in the public sector at an event later this month in the Global Sourcing Association’s 'Reshaping Outsourcing' programme.

At the event, to be hosted by law firm Linklaters on April 26, the Public Sector Day will set out to “celebrate the successes of public sector outsourcing” as well as answer “the tough questions” facing the industry. 

The questions include:

  • How can contract models be reshaped to suit the changing industry?
  • What can be achieved without EU Procurement rules?
  • How can the public and private sectors better work together to achieve targets for the taxpayer?
  • How can the public sector become significantly agile to leverage the benefits of emerging technology?

Looking ahead to the event, the GSA said, “Strategic sourcing has found itself in the news this year; outsourcing has become a dirty word and the use of the private sector to drive public sector advancements is being seriously questioned.”

It hopes experts from both local and central government as well as from the private sector will offer insight into how the outsourcing industry can reshape itself to protect its long-term future and ensure that, “as the largest outsourcer in Europe, the UK public sector can continue to deliver incredible added value.”

The outsourcing industry’s reputation in the public sector suffered a severe jolt in the wake of Carillion’s collapse with some analysts warning that a serious shake-up in public sector contracting markets is on the cards in a similar fashion to how government IT strategy was impacted by the earlier days of the Government Digital Service (GDS).

GlobalData chief analyst Jessica Figueras said, “Think back to the government IT strategy driven by GDS in its pomp. Disaggregation, SMEs, becoming a more intelligent customer, doing more work in-house. Five years later all of this is run-of-the-mill stuff. In time, it’s not inconceivable that similar could be applied to other public sector contracting markets.”

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