Special contracts unit for Derbyshire police in line for award

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The unit set up to review and negotiate supplier contracts for three East Midlands police forces has been nominated for a national Excellence Award.

East Midlands Strategic Commercial Unit was set up in 2012 to support Derbyshire, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire in the procurement of goods and services, with aim of making financial savings and generating greater efficiency across all areas of policing.

Its team of commercial and procurement specialists achieved total savings of almost £3m in its first year alone, while providing its service at a smaller cost for three forces than some single forces are able to run a similar in-house unit.

It has already received public endorsement from Home Secretary Theresa May, as well as Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary.

Now, EMSCU has been selected from among hundreds of entries as finalists in the Best Performing Team category of this year’s National Government Opportunities (GO) Excellence in Public Procurement Awards, which recognise high performing organisations who set the benchmark for procurement excellence.

EMSCU Commercial Director Ronnie Adams said: “We are absolutely delighted to have made the finals. EMSCU sometimes faces tough challenges making collaboration work for our forces, but to have our ethos and ways of working recognised like this is just fantastic.

“We have been driven by an approach we have called ‘Clientation’, bringing together the importance of good client management with collaboration in order to secure the best commercial options for all three forces.

“We have improved engagement with customers, enhanced our forces’ management of the market and developed more efficient and effective processes, largely by installing a professionally qualified team.

“It is with special thanks to all in that team, as well as our sponsors in Derbyshire, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire forces and Offices of Police and Crime Commissioner, that we now are being considered for such an accolade.”

The winners of the award will be announced at a ceremony in Manchester on Thursday 26 February.