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Scotland Excel present in the Efficiency and Collaboration Zone with CCS


Don’t miss Grant Montgomery and Paul Hansen present in the Efficiency & Collaboration Zone! The  Category Manager at
Scotland Excel and  Head of Devolved Administrations & Partnerships at Crown Commercial Service will be discussing “How Partnership Can Drive a Good Deal” on 23 October 2018.

With two weeks to go, we interviewed Grant Montgomery ahead of the event.


Grant, you are speaking with Paul Hansen from CCS in the Efficiency and Collaboration Zone at Procurex. Throughout the day there will be sessions on how procurement professionals can improve their performance to achieve efficiencies and savings for Scotland’s public sector – why is it important that procurement professionals attend these sessions?

I think it’s important for a number of reasons. Firstly, it’s an ideal opportunity for people in the procurement community and the wider supply base to come together and hear first hand about some of the challenges, considerations and successes that can be achieved. Also, it is now over ten years since the McClelland Report was published and we have now had a decade to move things forward from that baseline. Therefore it can greatly benefit both individuals and organisations to hear and understand some of the latest thinking and activities that are happening across the wider sector that are challenging and pushing the boundaries.


Last year Scotland Excel joined forces with CCS. Can you tell us more about this partnership?

Scotland Excel partnered with CCS to give Scottish local authorities a means to procure a full range of light and commercial vehicles. This opened up both additional vehicle manufacturers and available vehicle types to Scottish councils – ensuring their fleet requirements could be met in full while retaining best value.

Although the ‘official’ partnership commenced in May 2017 we started working together 18 months prior to understand how the partnership would work, agree on legal, structural and commercial issues, complete extensive stakeholder engagement and undertake the required business to business set-up to make the partnership as seamless as possible for our customers.


You will be presenting the session “How Partnership Can Drive a Good Deal”. What can delegates gain from attending this?

I’m keen to focus on building understanding of how relationships develop, the groundwork that needs to be undertaken, the challenges that you may face and how to overcome them, and how to drive things forward in a positive manner and make sure the partnership always results in a win-win outcome for all organisations.


Early engagement is a key theme for Procurex Scotland this year; is this something that Scotland Excel consider when working with the public sector?

Absolutely! Early engagement is critical to making anything a success. In our partnership with CCS it was vital to have early engagement, not just between our two organisations but also full involvement with our stakeholders. If this hadn’t happened it would not have been a success, pure and simple.


What are the main challenges your organisation’s procurement team are currently dealing with?

Like most organisations in the public sector it is doing more with less. It is all about working smarter and our partnership with CCS is an ideal example of working smarter! We can work together towards a shared goal and by combining our resources and expertise we can collectively achieve better outcomes than we could otherwise.


Scotland Excel are a Procurex Scotland event partner – why is it important for the organisation to be represented?

We are a centre of procurement expertise within the Scottish public sector and we represent all 32 local authorities, therefore it is paramount that we are a central partner in the event. As an innovative and progressive organisation, we are proud to share our successes and learnings with the wider public procurement community and are delighted to be a Procurex event partner.


Scotland Excel have been recognised in a number of categories at this year’s GO Awards Scotland, most notably for a collaborative project with SEEMis which has been nominated for GO Procurement Project of the Year Award. Can you tell us more about this?

SEEMiS and Scotland Excel worked together to procure a robust, sustainable ICT solution to replace the country’s education management information system, which is used by every council school in Scotland.

SEEMiS is a local government shared service, and in facing the challenge of replacing this national system was keen to work with Scotland Excel – also a shared service – to capitalise on the procurement knowledge and experience existing within the public sector and avoid the need for private consultancy.

We knew where we wanted to be in terms of the end product required and the price, but we were open to the market’s concepts and innovations on what the best solution would be to get us there, and how we could get the most out of our limited budget.

We also had to be creative to get the market attracted to an offer that could potentially be seen as being below market cost. Our approach of building in a long-term commercial incentive to the supplier helped us to work around this and we were able to attract ample interest.

Working together we implemented a procurement model which was a first for Scotland’s local government sector, and both organisations have gained vast knowledge and experience from this.


Don’t miss Grant Montgomery and Paul Hansen in the Efficiency & Collaboration Zone – book your place now.