Dorset Council is the county council of Dorset in England; Dorset County Council provided the upper tier of local government below which are the district councils, and town and parish councils. They became Dorset Council after Local Government Reorganisation took place to merge the councils together to work with the community to make Dorset a better place to live, work and learn; the authority provide services to schools, social care for the elderly and vulnerable, road maintenance, libraries and trading standards.
Before March 2014, The Procurement team at Dorset County Council were previously using a contract register which created challenges because of the lack of central information and standardized data capture and documentation. Following a presentation and overview of the Accord contract management system, the team at Dorset County Council could see the benefits of adopting the system and opportunities it presented to make it fit for purpose for the authority.
Target were able to deliver a system to provide information and data capture that the Council required with the opportunity to build and adapt to Dorset’s requirements. Accord has resolved issues across the expenditure and income contracts for the authority and provided the team with opportunities to capture and streamline processes and procedures for the authority.
Dorset County Council were using the system for contract management across the whole authority ultimately improving the way information is collected and shared. Dorset now have a single repository of contract documentation which has enabled them to review their contract management processes and ensure they are consistent in their approach.
Recently Local Government Reorganisation has taken place in the County of Dorset, which resulted from 1 April 2019 in a new Dorset Council replacing the existing district and borough councils (East Dorset, North Dorset, Purbeck, West Dorset, Weymouth & Portland) and Dorset County Council.
To facilitate smooth transfer the councils had to ensure that they had in a place a central record of their live contracts. Dorset County Council already had in place Accord as a contracts database and following what had been a compliance agenda to monitor spend against contracts, had already done considerable work to populate the database.
"The ability and freedom to develop Accord to address challenges of bringing all contracts into one council has been vital in the work needed under the Shaping Dorset Council programme. It enabled the councils to not only to have a central record of all contracts but also to provide one version of the truth as all decisions in relation to the contracts were held in the one place"
As part of the Shaping Dorset change programme for the new Dorset Council, Dorset Procurement, worked with Target to develop the Accord system to support the necessary work needed to review all contracts and the contract management system was opened to also record all District and Borough contracts as well.
Dawn Adams, Interim Head of Procurement said, “The ability and freedom to develop Accord to address challenges of bringing all contracts into one council has been vital in the work needed under the Shaping Dorset Council programme. It enabled the councils to not only to have a central record of all contracts but also to provide one version of the truth as all decisions in relation to the contracts were held in the one place. The ability to run reports against Christchurch Impact provided the ability to create contract transfer lists that also recorded discussions and decisions made by both Dorset Council and Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Council.”
She continued: “I would highly recommend the system and Target’s development capabilities to other organisations and associates with the same issues. For the procurement team of Dorset Council, we will be taking forward further development of Accord to meet the aspirations and needs of the new Council. We will continue to work innovatively with Target’s expertise to deliver this next chapter as Dorset Council.”
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