Cllr David “Drury” Monk
Corporate Director for Resources Jeremy Chambers
have been exploring alternative service delivery projects for SDC.
Shared services between Ashford Borough Council and Shepway District Council have been under exploration since 2014. SDC admit there is a risk that unless there is clarity over the shared working outcomes then the projects may not be delivered. They also admit there is a risk both financially and reputationally.
Senior Managers at SDC have been in close contact with their counterparts at Ashford Borough Council and have consider a number of smaller projects initially, which are easily manageable and have more certain outcome.
What are these smaller projects?
What have the costs of the smaller projects been to date?
How significant is the financial risk?
How significant is the reputational risk?
Furthermore, SDC admit There is a risk to the council that the council will not be able to attract and retain those officers who have the professional skills which are essential to the delivery of the corporate plan. A second risk is if the council is unable to access additional investment to deliver corporate plan objectives.
SDC Senior Managers are looking into the development of a framework of
specialist consultants who can be commissioned by the organisation to provide
additional support if required. The result will be a pool of resources which the council can call on if necessary with a faster lead in time than using standard recruitment methods each time. Consultants on the list will still be subject to the council’s usual procurement and contract standing order rules.”.
Who are these “Consultants”?
How much have these consultants cost?
What additional support is required?
SDC it would appear need assistance in recruiting people. It did not have any difficulty when it employed Andrina Smith and her three assistants. One might ask if Ms Andrina Smith is up to the job as head of HR, when SDC need to call in “consultants”.
No doubt SDC will not answer any of our questions, nor will they answer any FOI within 20 days. But there’s an idea for anyone with the time.