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1 February 2013 | Adam Leach
Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude has launched the government’s commissioning academy, where commissioners from across the public sector will learn best practice and strategies from those employing innovative approaches.
From April 2013, senior level commissioners from public sector organisations such as central and local government, health and judicial bodies will be taught by buyers deemed to have successfully transformed commissioning within their organisation.
To join the academy, participants must be sponsored by their director-general or chief executive. Upon completion, they will undertake a 100-day plan aimed at transforming their organisation’s commissioning practices.
Participants will develop skills in five key areas: outcome-based commissioning; working with the voluntary and community sector; market engagement and development; joint commissioning across organisational boundaries; and new models of delivery, such as joint ventures.
Maude said in a statement: “Sharing new approaches needs to be done consistently, quickly, and effectively. That is why the government, with the support of the Local Government Association (LGA), has designed a new commissioning academy which will have an important role in equipping and delivering a new wave of twenty-first century expert commissioners with the right skills.”
Jim Bligh, head of public services reform at the CBI, said: “This initiative could help public sector leaders to respond more effectively to the increasing demand for services while saving the taxpayer money. Encouraging the sharing of best practice, including a focus on improving commercial nous and risk-sharing, will help make the relationship between providers and commissioners more strategic.”