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London councils 'to unlock major savings through combined services'
Three London councils have provided a report into the savings they have unlocked by adopting a shared service-based operating model.
Westminster City Council, The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea and the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham said they are on track to save around £33 million annually by 2014/15 following the reform, increasing to £40 million the year after.
The councils have combined their library, adult social care and children's services and have gained enhanced bulk procurement capabilities as a result, while IT, facilities management and human resources functions could be merged next.
David Loseby, who was chief procurement officer at Westminster in the run-up to the merger, told Supply Management that this model should act as an example to other councils across the UK.
He explained: "The message needs to be out there that people need to start putting aside their individualisms ... in order to make more gains in terms of collaboration and more effective use of the public purse."
Earlier this month, ICT sector professional body Socitm said shared service models are to become essential for the public sector over the coming years, making it vital they are planned properly.
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