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Scotland well-placed to pioneer national strategy for shared services

Scotland may be uniquely placed to pioneer a world-class shared services strategy, according to Northgate Information Solutions.

In a response submitted to the Scottish Executive’s consultation, A Shared Approach to Building a Better Scotland, Northgate welcomes the analysis of the services and functions that may be delivered through shared services and the recognition of the benefits in terms of efficient and effective processes.

To ensure success, Northgate calls for service transformation rather than cost-cutting to underpin the strategy’s development and suggests further areas, such as education, where shared services could support delivery.

The response also calls for:

- a full analysis of how shared services and business process re-engineering could deliver service transformation as well as reduce costs;
- prioritisation of the key areas where more and better services can be delivered for less on the basis of risk, identifiable barriers and clearly articulated benefits
- consideration of using an incremental approach to rolling out shared services, including the use of pilot schemes, to provide a clear evidence base for further reform;
- clear articulation of the rationale and priorities when dealing with existing multi-agency working arrangements to avoid reinforcing ‘silos’ in delivery;
- the ICT steering group to not be composed solely of technology experts to ensure that technical issues do not dominate the strategic use of technology;
- consideration of how collaborative partnerships with the private and voluntary sectors could support ongoing development of the strategy.

Speaking today, Dave Meaden, Managing Director of Northgate Public Services, said:

“The shared services agenda has the possibility to act as a platform for the transformation of public services in Scotland to fit the changing needs of its citizens in the twenty-first century.

“In our experience of working with public authorities in Scotland and across the UK, it is only by having a clear vision of what is hoped to be achieved, strong leadership, fully-engaged employees and trusted partnership arrangements that shared services can be developed effectively.”

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For More Information:

Fellows’ Associates:
Kathy Sutton 020 7092 1801 / 07966 890401
Naomi Stevenson 020 7092 1803 / 07966 890403