1 February 2012

NSCSO Weekly message - 27 January 2012

UNESCO World Heritage Site ( no heritage in NSCSO )

How do the staff contain their excitement from one week to the next awaiting the weekly messages? Here is another one you to mull over.

From: Schroder, Johnathan On Behalf Of onebarnet
Sent: 27 January 2012 17:06
To: onebarnet
Subject: NSCSO Weekly Message

Dear colleague

As we shared with you last week, evaluation and scoring of bids has now been completed. We want to say a big thank you to all those involved in the evaluation; there has been a lot of hard work and attention to detail, and we couldn’t have done it without input from a lot of people across the council. Mr Mustard thought that the residents of Barnet, whose money is being gambled with in this massive high-risk OneBarnet project ought to know who the 40 people are who have been closeted away at the offices of City solicitors and deciding who will get over £250million of council tax payers' hard earned money. The answer he got to the question was this, emphasis added by Mr Mustard:

At the date of your request the council was and still is in the process of a procurement procedure which relates to the New Support and Customer Services Organisation (NSCSO) project. On this basis I am applying section 43(2) of the FOIA on the grounds that disclosure of the job titles of the 40 officers would prejudice the procurement process at this vital stage. The council is satisfied that the officers concerned will be identifiable from the job titles if released into the public domain, and it is likely that they may be targeted by members of the public, which would or would likely prejudice the procurement process and ultimately the commercial interests of the council. Mr Mustard will ask for a review of the refusal as 99% of the population of Barnet have not heard of One Barnet and so are hardly likely to target council officers - to do what exactly?

Meetings are planned with lead councillors on the project next week to discuss the outcome of the evaluation, before the report for directors on 6 February and subsequently Cabinet Resources Committee on 28 February. The CRC report naming the shortlisted bidders will be published towards the end of February. Briefings for staff are being set up during the week of 20 to 24 February before CRC takes place. No need to brief councillors before CRC on 28 February. They will just vote the report through and some councillors won't even read it in full.

These will be service by service and you will be informed of the dates as soon as possible. If OneBarnet has not run into the buffers by then.

This week I presented to the regular Director's Briefing event ( was there only one Director there as implied by the placing of the apostrophe? ) that the Children's Service holds for primary school head teachers to explain the impact of the procurement on the traded services that they rely on. I talked about the positive benefits that we expect the transfer to bring in terms of quality and cost, and the protections that will be put in place to ensure that performance is protected from day one. There were a number of questions, including one about whether the staff that they value highly will transfer as part of the TUPE regulations, which I confirmed ( but once the contractor starts piling on extra duties, cutting hours, changing terms and conditions and bringing in new cheaper people all the good staff will leave ). Headteachers will have the opportunity to talk to bidders about the needs of schools in phase two of competitive dialogue beginning in late March. Next week I'll be delivering the same presentation to the secondary head teachers. Schools should stay as far away from the local authority as is legally possible. Barnet Council really haven't got procurement fully under control and if you convert to academy status you can do your own thing.

As ever, if you have any questions to raise about the project, send them to onebarnet@barnet.gov.uk. What a great idea. Mr Mustard and the other bloggers might just send you a list of questions to answer.

Kind regards

Kari Manovitch
Service Lead, New Support and Customer Service Organisation project, Commercial Services

Whilst out outsourcing it's a bit quiet on the parking front and we are inching towards the start of the parking contract with NSL ( the people who behaved so abominably towards a conscientious and fair employee in Westminster - see the Nutsville blog )

Mr Mustard wrote to all the ruling councillors last week as follows :

Dear Councillors

I do not think that NSL are going to enhance the reputation of Barnet Council if they display the sort of behaviour that a tribunal has found they did in Westminster.

Of course you will say that this sort of behaviour will not be allowed in Barnet but leopards don't change their spots and Barnet Council has an ignominious record when it comes to the monitoring of contracts.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

Mr Mustard did not expect or ask for a response but you would think that one councillor would take it upon himself ( the leader maybe, showing some leadership ) to respond and defend their decision and explain why NSL are so right for Barnet. Not a dicky bird has been heard out of any councillor.

NSL are meeting the staff this Thursday. Will the staff ask NSL searching questions about how they are to be treated generally and if they are going to be placed under horrific pressure to meet quotas for the issue of parking tickets.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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