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Driving down the cost of procurement



As part of their Digital transformation programme, Public Health England (PHE) was investing heavily in new digital initiatives.  Progress was needed to rapidly specify and procure a range of digital services to meet its digital transformation strategy needs and key deadlines. However, they lacked the in-house expertise to procure digital services effectively and they did not have suitably experienced and knowledgeable procurement staff to work alongside the digital transformation leads. In addition to this, the workload generated by the digital programme was unpredictable and difficult to plan for.
Traditionally, PHE would have looked to engage specialist interim contractors to help deliver this work. However, in the past this had proved costly and difficult to manage and control. Little or no upskilling and knowledge transfer to the in-house team was undertaken and there was poor customer feedback on delivery performance. In addition, the introduction of IR35 legislation and the Cabinet Office restrictions on the use of contractors and consultants made their on-going use less attractive.


Cadence Innova’s ‘Procurement as a Service’ (PaaS) offered PHE a flexible procurement delivery resourcing model for expert end to end procurement support and services. The service blends subject matter expertise with experienced, stakeholder-driven Delivery Consultants. Together they provide clients with the flexibility to react to new business requirements and operating environments. This results in increased procurement agility, capability and capacity while maintaining the high levels of compliance and quality that is demanded of modern procurement capabilities. The service covers the full procurement lifecycle from pre-procurement, through procurement delivery, to contract award and implementation.


PHE has the resource flexibility, capacity and improved capability they were seeking and they have delivered a series of complex digital procurement projects that would not have been possible without Cadence’s assistance. Cadence has delivered significant cost savings as a result of expert contract negotiations, and improved customer satisfaction with the procurement service as procurements have been run effectively and efficiently, delivering great business outcomes. With extensive experience of OJEU, DOS, G-Cloud and other government frameworks, Cadence has delivered on its objective of upskilling and mentoring the in-house procurement team.
Together with PHE, Procurement as a Service was recognised nationally for its innovative approach to the traditional procurement consultancy model when it was named as a finalist in the National Go Awards in the category Procurement Innovation / Initiative of the Year – (Health and Social Care Organisation).