Agenda and minutes

Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Tuesday, 4th October, 2011 2.00 pm

Venue: Committee Suite 1,2 & 3, Westfields, Middlewich Road, Sandbach CW11 1HZ. View directions

Contact: Mark Nedderman  Senior Scrutiny Officer

No. Item


Also Present


Councillor PH Mason Procurement and Shared Services Portfolio Holder


Officers Present


Lisa Quinn - Director of Finance and Business Services

Sam Clemence – Category Manager

Wendy Clarke – Interim Category Manager

Janet Ellison Jones - Category Manager

Mark Nedderman –Senior Scrutiny Officer


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 60 KB


RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 2 September be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of Interest

To provide an opportunity for Members and Officers to declare any personal and/or prejudicial interests and for members to declare the existence of a party whip in relation to any item on the agenda.


There were no declarations of interest.


Public Speaking Time/Open Session

A total period of 15 minutes is allocated for members of the public to make a statement(s) on any matter that falls within the remit of the Committee.


Individual members of the public may speak for up to 5 minutes, but the Chairman will decide how the period of time allocated for public speaking will be apportioned, where there are a number of speakers.


Note: In order for officers to undertake any background research, it would be helpful if members of the public contacted the Scrutiny officer listed at the foot of the agenda, at least one working day before the meeting to provide brief details of the matter to be covered. 


There were no members of the public present who wished to address the committee.


Procurement update pdf icon PDF 58 KB

To receive a presentation from Lisa Quinn, Director of Finance and Business Services. A summary sheet and a copy of the Cheshire East Procurement Strategy are enclosed.

Additional documents:


Lisa Quinn supported by Samantha Clements, Wendy Clarke and Janet Ellison Jones gave a presentation on the Council’s procurement strategy.


Lisa explained that the Council’s existing strategy 2009-2012 was to be the subject of a substantial revision with a view to a new strategy being in place by 1 April 2012.


In March 2011, the procurement unit had been subject to a health check by the North West Improvement and Efficiency Partnership (NWIEP)Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA).


The health check had identified the following:


a)            That the role and structure of the Central Procurement function should be reviewed to develop a team that is adequately staffed and skilled to deliver the service required by service areas to ensure the Council’s significant buying power is used to maximise the social, economic and environmental benefits to your local communities.

b)      That a skills analysis of the Procurement staff be undertaken to identify any gaps where training is required to ensure the staff have the required commercial knowledge and procurement skills to fully support departments in delivering value for money in all procurement activities.


c)      That membership in AGMA be maximised to develop detailed spend analysis and increase engagement in collaborative procurement opportunities and the improvement and efficiency programme.


d)      That a comprehensive central contract register be produced covering the contracts in place within each individual Department.


e)      That a detailed Procurement Forward Plan be developed for the next 3 years.


f)       That a detailed savings sheet be implemented identifying the areas targeted to deliver savings in each financial year for the next three years.


The Chief Executive had been involved in high level discussions with AGMA representatives about an initiative to establish a ‘leading edge’ Procurement Service for AGMA, which may be either a Shared Service or a strategic collaboration. The initiative was in its early stages with 4/5 authorities expressing an interest, but Cheshire East had given a firm commitment to join this major project. The Council also had an existing commitment to the AGMA Improvement & Efficiency Programme as an Associate Member.


The Procurement process at Cheshire East was being transformed and reviewed through a number of mechanisms:



·          The P2P (Procure to Pay) process straddled the HR & Finance Shared Service and the CE corporate procurement process. This was being reviewed and improved through the Business Management Programme.

·          The HR & Finance Shared Service, including the shared element of the P2P process, was part of the major Shared Service improvement programme that was likely to culminate in the creation of a Separate Legal Entity (SLE). 

·          The Shared Service situation had been significantly rationalised further through the closure of CBS Supplies, the stocks and supplies service inherited from the County Council.

Wendy Clarke informed the Committee that the current arrangement with the Council’s employment agency expired at the end of March 2012 and the Council was working with colleagues in Cheshire West and Chester Council to jointly procure future agency services.


(a)               That the presentation be noted;  ...  view the full minutes text for item 139.


Work Programme Progress Report pdf icon PDF 69 KB

To consider a report of the Borough Solicitor.

Additional documents:


The Committee considered a report of the Borough Solicitor containing the Committee’s Work programme for 2011/2012.


The Chairman informed the Committee that he and the vice Chairman had recently met the new Resources Portfolio holder to discuss with him emerging issues within the Resources portfolio and had suggested that the Council should consider the options available in the Localism Bill to review the Council’s governance arrangements.




(a)   That the report be received;


(b)   That an item be added to the Committee’s work programme to investigate options available in the Localism Bill to review the Councils governance arrangements.


Forward Plan - Extracts pdf icon PDF 165 KB

To note the current forward plan, identify any new items, and to determine whether any further examination of new issues is appropriate.


The Committee considered items listed in the current forward plan.


RESOLVED – That the Forward Plan be received and noted.