The Crown Commercial Service is on course to exceed the top end of its savings target for 2015-16, but director Matt Denham has spoken of the challenges the agency faces in the hunt for its own Uber and Airbnb equivalents.
Denham, who is the CCS’s commercial delivery director, told the Public Sector ICT Summit that the government procurement intermediary had an in-year savings target of £300m-£400m, and had passed £380m at the end of January.
But he also told the event, organised by PublicTechnology’s parent company Dods, that the nature and scale of the service’s 1,400-strong client base made it hard to maximise its use of game-changing disruptive procurement opportunities.
“I love disruptive procurement,” he said. “There are huge opportunities out there, but it’s very difficult to get collaboration across departments, so I’ve got to focus the team’s efforts on probably a handful of those.
“They will be difficult to land, but it will be disruptive, and it will be our Uber equivalent or our Airbnb equivalent.
“Because most of them have such a good return, it starts to get the attention of the people in the Treasury who count the big numbers. I’d encourage disruption.”
Denham told the March 1 event that he believed the CCS – an executive agency of the Cabinet Office that operates as a trading fund – would “easily” meet targets to save more than £2bn over the course of the current Spending Review period, which lasts until 2019-20 .