Decision details

Contract award for consultancy service for Zero Based Budgeting Service Review Programme

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Public Services Reform

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


The Council initiated a new Corporate Zero-Based Budgeting Programme in April 2019. The programme incorporates a new fundamental approach to reviewing services and budgets throughout the Council during 2019/20 and a rolling programme of deeper dive service reviews. The two most challenging and significant service reviews are for demand management in adults and children’s social care. To provide the capacity and capability that is needed to undertake these reviews and put into place a clear strategy, route map and savings plans for better demand management by the end of September 2019 a direct award for consultancy services is recommended.


1.    Waive the Contracts Standing Orders (CSOs) 23.1 requirements of seeking three written quotations for the provision of consultancy services claiming:

·         the nature of the market for the works to be carried out, or the goods to be purchased, or the services to be provided has been investigated and is demonstrated to be such that a departure from these CSOs is justifiable;

·         it is in the Council’s overall interest; and

·         there are other circumstances which are genuinely exceptional.


2.    Directly award the contract for the provision of specialist consultancy services to Impower Consulting for a total value of up to £100,000 from 20th May 2019 to 31st August 2019.


3.    To note the contract will be continually and closely monitored against its expected return on investment criteria and delivered through the joint project team (comprising Impower and Council Officers) to ensure it is embedded within Adults and Children’s services.


Reasons for the decision:

The reason for the decision can be found in the report.

Alternative options considered:

The option of undertaking the work without external expertise was rejected.  This is because specialist capability for translating very high-level opportunities to detailed delivery and savings plans that are validated by expertise and insights provided from working in other authorities and undertaking this work within six months was not considered feasible by the Strategic Director for Social Care and Public Service Reform and the Director of Children’s Services.


The option of running a procurement exercise was considered and rejected for the reasons set out in 1.1 and 1.2 of the report.


Publication date: 31/05/2019

Date of decision: 24/05/2019

Accompanying Documents: