Budget response Public sector bodies across the UK should re-negotiate contracts to achieve best value in the marketplace, in the light of budget restraints and the desire of the coalition government to reduce debt more quickly, according to Currie & Brown UK's public sector director, Simon Robinson.
"We are in a very confusing situation here, following last week's emergency budget. On the one hand the government wishes to devolve responsibility to local authorities, but with the other it is cutting budgets by 25 per cent over five years," commented Robinson.
"At the same time some education and defence spending appears to have joined health under some form of protection. This creates an uncertain position and it is vital that the implications are well understood by people managing budgets both within those areas, as well as others that are more exposed to cuts.
"Public sector bodies must review their existing contracts and re-negotiate them wherever possible in the light of the need to reduce costs and extract greater value. For them to succeed in that will require high-level skills in commercial and contract management, two areas which the National Audit Office have highlighted as being severely lacking in the sector.
"The budget has made this absolutely imperative for public bodies if they are to meet Treasury demands."