20 September 2011

Commercial Directorate not an advert for high performance

Hello Mr Craig Cooper, Mr Mustard hasn't mentioned you on this blog for a while and at £130,000 a year you really should figure more often with stories of the fantastic work you are doing as the Director of Commercial Services but instead here is the performance report for the 1st quarter of 2011-12 which is April to June 2011 inclusive.

click to enlarge; back to return

What an achievement. Millions and millions of pounds on offer at the market day and potential suppliers turned up. Mr Mustard is astounded at such success!

The HR rating of negative 4 looks like a complete disaster though especially as last quarter it was only minus 1. It would seem that the directorate is losing its grip on the staff.

Mr Mustard just loves that word "issues". Someone with behavioural issues tends to thump people. Mr Mustard thinks that there is nothing wrong with the words "challenges" or "problems".

It's no surprise is it that the security contract is still rearing its ugly head.


not too obvious is it?

Interesting wording. managing "potential disputes" is one of the top three issues. Mr Mustard therefore concludes that there are not 3 real issues if a potential issue has made it onto the list. 

Oh yes, IS, or Information systems - they have become the new MetPro by the looks of it. Another complete and utter shambles.

Now that's what Mr Mustard calls an overspend. An overspend of £516,000 on rents and service charges. You are outstanding at controlling your budget then Captain Cooper, but in the same category as Simon Cowell's "that was a Triple A performance" - Awful, Awful, Awful. Overspent on IS transformation as well - Mr Mustard expects there will be more of that to come.

For the benefit of readers the CPI numbers have all been changed. Barnet Council manage to use both the old and the new numbers in one document without any explanation ( well they wouldn't want you to work out what is going on ). Mr Mustard thinks that CPI314 became 7001 and CPI205 became 7003. 

That was good bit of work wasn't it. Decide on CPI314 and then find out it's too hard - lots of forethought went into that one then.Echoing the explanation Mr Mustard has his own to add:-

"Whilst in principle One Barnet seemed like a good idea t the time, in practice it is an expensive white elephant"

If vendors are reduced from 9700 to 5820 won't that leave small local suppliers out in the cold?

Look at the first 6 lines. If Mr Mustard wrote these they would say "The original targets were too hard so we will replace them with something easier"

CPI333 might be 7004 but there again it might not. Someone at LBB will hopefully add a comment. Fancy writing reports that cannot be understood if you don't work at the council.

Look Mrs Angry no top female earners in the whole directorate. What do you think the problem is? Mysogynist management? or just that Captain Cooper hasn't realised your brilliance in commercial areas. Perhaps he was admiring your intellect and not glowering at you at that meeting we were at recently? Staffing is definitely a problem in this directorate, stuffed with fixed term contract staff - they will soon be gone - just holding their hand out every month.

So nicely put. A number of long term absence cases have been exited from the organisation. If you get seriously ill in Barnet you get your P45 - such compassion.

Evidently the managers hold you in great awe Captain Cooper as despite your great emphasis on submitting absence returns only 75% of the managers bothered. One in four said "up yours Delors" ( for students of the EU ).

Appraisals are only completed by 42%. A ghastly performance that does not need further appraisal.

So even more staff are temps and the procurement team are struggling to implement the PAP ( procurement action plan ) and estates are in bother with rents. There are 10 amber risks, what a pity that we don't get to see what they are.

There is always a plan. Usually one brought in after someone has pointed out a disaster.

Barnet Council are so good at procurement ( MetPro anyone; £17 an hour rather than £9 ) that they are teaching the landlords to educate them. Grandma and eggs springs to mind.

Evidently if a clear asset map has to be drawn up no-one knew what assets the council owned. A 5 year acquisition and disposal plan. That will be an interesting document to ask to see a copy of.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard


  1. dear oh dear, Cap'n Cooper, what are you like?

    Mr Mustard: was he glowering at me? I thought that a. either he was consumed with love for Mrs Angry, which is of course perfectly understandable, or b. he had indigestion.

    Gutted. Taking back the compliment about his cufflinks then.

  2. Of course Mra A, he was trying to digest One Barnet which causes indigestion and a headache at the same time


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