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Use of Consultants

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Dear Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council,

I am working with a UK media organisation which is interested in the way in which the public sector is responding to budget cuts.

As part of this work we have been researching the reduction in staffing at senior levels in the public sector since the 2010 general election.

We are interested to report 2 main topics:

1) An analysis of the way in which individuals at senior levels have moved around the public sector
2) An analysis of the way in which organisations like yours have felt the need to turn to private sector consultancy to help cope with the loss of internal senior staff

In particular we are interested in areas that might be considered 'back office' rather than 'front line'

We have looked at the spend information on your website relating to the period Jan 2015 to Jan 2016.

We have filtered the data to show spend which you have classed as 'consultancy' and we have limited this filter to the 'Resources' area because this is likely to be a good indicator of 'back office' services.

According to your own data the Resources department has spent £710,224 on consultancy over the 12 month period in question.

We think our client's readership might be interested that some organisations are cutting front line and back office staff numbers whilst spending very large sums on back-office consulting firms.

There are 5 organisations that you have spent in excess of £50k each on in the last 12 months. These are listed below.

CLEAR THINKING MANAGEMENT LTD £83,315
PENNA PLC £67,941
ICT REVOLUTIONS LTD £60,775
NUMBER 10 INTERIM LTD £57,750
MARK GURREY CONSULTING LTD £55,725

Through our work with other public sector bodies we are familiar with most of the 57 consultancy firms in your spend list, but there are 2 companies with spend over £50k for whom we have been unable to discern the services they offer as they have no web presence to speak of.

Under the terms of the FOIA please answer the following questions:

QUESTION 1 - please explain exactly what services CLEAR THINKING MANAGEMENT LTD and MARK GURREY CONSULTING LTD provide to the Council.
Your answer should make it clear what the staff from these companies are doing for the Council and why you need to buy-in this work.

QUESTION 2 - please provide the dates at which you first engaged these 2 organisations and the length of the engagement (or estimated end date if still employed).

QUESTION 3 - please let us know the procurement route for these contracts (e.g. did you use an existing framework, if so which one?). Also, please confirm whether these companies were engaged through a single initial tender or whether you have re-procured these services through repeated extensions to contracts.

Yours faithfully,

Sally Jones
Freelance <-> Media

Dear Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council's handling of my FOI request 'Use of Consultants'.

Your response is now long overdue and by law you should have responded by now.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/u...

Yours faithfully,

Sally Jones

FreedomofInformation, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Ms Jones,

Thank you for your e-mail and I apologise that you have had to chase up the requested information due to our delay in responding. I can confirm that your request for information is still being processed and we will endeavour to send you the complete response as soon as possible.

Your Sincerely,

Wayne Singleton
Records & Information Management Officer
Information Governance Unit
Legal Services
Finance and Customer Services Directorate
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
 
Tel : (01709) 255834
Internal From New: 55834
Internal From Old: 7455834
 
Email: [email address]
Visit our website: www.rotherham.gov.uk
 
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Dear FreedomofInformation,

I note that you have said that you will provide a response to my request but I think we need to impose a deadline.

If I do not receive a satisfactory response by June 17th (3 weeks from today) I will escalate the issue to the ICO and also advise my clients that there is apparent evasion and that this warrants attention.

Yours sincerely,

Sally Jones
Journalist

FreedomofInformation, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear Ms. Jones

Please may I again offer our apologies on behalf of the Council for the delay in responding to your request.

Thank you for your patience, please be assured that we are continuing to follow this up and will send you a response as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely,

Kyle Hopkins
Access to Information Assistant
Information Governance Unit
Legal Services
Finance and Customer Services Directorate
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council 
 
Tel: (01709)254416          
Internal from old: 7454416
Internal from new: 54416  
 
Email:  [email address]        
Visit our website: http://www.rotherham.gov.uk

 
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FreedomofInformation, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

4 Attachments

Dear Ms Jones

 

Freedom of Information Act 2000 – Request for Information - 1191

 

Thank you for your request for information received on the 5^th March 2016
regarding the Use of Consultants.

 

Firstly, on behalf of the Council, may I offer our sincere apologies for
the delay in responding to your request, you should have received a
response by no later than 5^th April 2016.

 

However, we are now in a position to provide you with the Council’s
response to your request, please see attached.

 

Yours Sincerely,

 

 

Wayne Singleton

Access to Information Officer

Information Governance Unit

Customer, Information and Digital Services

Finance and Customer Services Directorate

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

 

Tel : (01709) 255834

Internal From New: 55834

Internal From Old: 7455834

 

Email: [1][email address]

Visit our website: [2]www.rotherham.gov.uk

 

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References

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We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Sally Jones please sign in and let everyone know.

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