As the coalition Government looks to reduce spending across the public sector, Mayoral advisor Nicholas Griffin explains how London’s Government is working to make savings by sharing services and procurement across the GLA group.
Whilst some work has already been done to realise benefits from a combined approach to sharing services and collaborating on procurement there still remains a significant opportunity for further savings.
Functional areas such as Human Resources, Information and Communication Technology and Facilities Management all have large budgets which offer potential for savings through collaborative working.
There are however many smaller functions and purchases which, taken as a whole, could also provide worthwhile savings. These include items such as stationery, mobile telephony, catering and temporary staff where savings could be realised if a group view was taken on procurement and negotiations on contracts were conducted for the group as a whole.
Solutions to sharing services will be possible within the group and there are already examples. TfL is hosting the GLA’s Procurement and Legal Services functions. Where appropriate the GLA group will also explore opportunities to share services with other bodies for example London Boroughs and in the case of the Metropolitan Police, other forces up and down the country.
We have set an ambitious yet realistic target of a 20% saving on the £2.2bn and work is underway on a programme to realise this benefit. Over the next two years we will target functional areas large and small across the group prioritising our work in the areas which offer more immediate and larger savings.
Nicholas Griffin is an advisor to Mayor of London Boris Johnson and is responsible for delivering cost efficiencies across the GLA Group.