Burnley awards decade-long back office services contract

Burnley Council has signed a 10-year contract with business process provider Liberata to cover services including ICT.

The contract, for which the council is paying £34m will also include customer services, revenues, benefits and debt management, payroll and human resources systems, asset and facility management services plus environmental health and licensing.

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The council says the deal will save it around £8m – equivalent to 19% of current costs – over the life of the contract, and will lead to a £4.9m investment in ICT and other services.

Council leader Mark Townsend said that the council intended to help more people access services online as part of the transition.

He said: “Key points are that the council remains responsible for the services; that Burnley residents will continue to receive the services being transferred; and these will be delivered by people with local knowledge.

Liberata has promised to create 100 new jobs in Burnley, while existing staff with transfer to it from the council.

The decade-long contract has emerged from the council’s ‘change programme’ which it has been running since April 2014. 

The council’s executive considered the proposed contract behind closed doors, and concluded that it would save money over retaining services in house. 

Burnley’s financial strategy relies on saving £2m over the next two years out of its total annual budget of £16m.

Colin Marrs

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