Buy Social is about delivering real benefits to communities

BUY SOCIAL is about delivering real benefits to communities

Buy Social is about delivering real benefits to communities

These benefits include:

  • Targeted recruitment and training for people who are long-term unemployed and leaving education
  • Opportunities for people with disability or learning difficulties
  • The provision of skills
  • Working with schools and colleges to enrich the curriculum

It was subsequently agreed that the Strategic Investment Board would undertake an independent review. The review was undertaken in consultation with the Department of Finance’s Central Procurement Directorate, particularly in terms of developing practical models for the future and included consultation with Permanent Secretaries and senior staff in Departments, with representative organisations from both the Construction Industry Forum (CIFNI) and Business and Industry Forum (BIFNI); and with Centres of Procurement Excellence (CoPEs).

Drawing on best practice, the Review concluded that a change of emphasis would secure the best outcomes:

a focus on paid employment and training opportunities;
concentration on the larger contracts – where efforts will have the biggest impact;
bringing together requirements for opportunities for “new entrant trainees”: long-term unemployed people, young people leaving education (because of higher levels of youth unemployment), apprentices, and paid student work placements. This offers flexibilities for contractors in tailoring compliance with the clauses to their workforce needs;
the establishment of a social benefits reference group, as a means of promoting the new arrangements in Departments and encouraging early engagement at business case stage;
a proposal for more comprehensive brokerage services to help link new entrants and relevant contractors and provide a support service for new entrants that facilitates their transition into work; and
underpinning these arrangements with legislation in the new Assembly mandate.
The proposals also included new monitoring arrangements to provide more comprehensive data on the outputs secured.

On 5th November 2015 the Procurement Board agreed the Strategic Review of Social Clauses and the Buy Social Construction model for implementation from April 2016. The Procurement Board agreed that a letter should be sent to the Executive, detailing the desire to move forward with the Construction sector straight away, with a model for services to be further investigated and consulted on. The letter would also note the need to consider what provision the next Programme for Government should make on social clauses.

From April 2016 the Buy Social requirements are to be used in procurement above £2m for construction and above £4m for civil engineering contracts.

Ongoing…

Pilots ongoing and the Buy Social Services and ICT models are currently under development

July 2016

Publication of the OECD report “A Strategic Review of the Public Sector” – The review recommends the Government “Develop and make available expertise in social clauses to commissioning and procurement officials as they undertake their work”. Please see OECD report here.

April 2016

Buy Social becomes mandatory in construction and civil engineering contracts. Buy Social requirements are to be used in procurement above £2m for buildings contracts and above £4m for civil engineering contracts.

Brokerage website goes live which has been created to help contractors who win public work find employability brokers who will help them deliver their Buy Social Clause obligations, for more information visit www.buysocialnibrokerage.org

February 2016

Further development of the Buy Social Team with the appointment of a Research & Policy Officer for Buy Social

November 2015

Procurement Board agreed the Strategic Review of Social Clauses and the Buy Social Construction Model for implementation from April 2016. The key recommendations accepted were:

  • Introduction of threshold values (£2m building, £4m civil engineering)
  • One KPI of person-weeks
  • Employment not work experience
  • Introduction of legislation
  • Greater focus on compliance (monitoring)
  • Opportunities for under 25’s
  • Brokerage

August 2015

Development of the Buy Social Team, with the appointment of two Development Officers employed by SIB to provide training and assistance with implementation of the new approach following the review

January 2015

First publication of the Buy Social Toolkit

November 2014

Procurement Board requested a thorough evaluation of the impact of social clauses. Strategic Investment Board (SIB) agreed to undertake an independent review in consultation with the Central Procurement Directorate (CPD)

Department Contract Approx value Contractor
Department for Infrastructure A6 dualling scheme (Randalstown to Castledawson) Graham/Farrans
Department of Health Altnagelvin hospital – North Block TBC
Department of Health Ulster hospital – Phase 2 Graham/BAM, Attracta.Mathews@graham.co.uk
Department for the Economy Gas to the West SGN (Lead Contractor), info@gastothewest.com
Department of Education Strabane Academy TBC
DAERA BallyKelly DAERA HQ Turkingtons, Lynsey.Rainey@turkington-holdings.com
Department of Education Colaiste Feirste Woodvale Construction, Yvonne.conway@woodvaleconstruction.co.uk
Department of Education Victoria College MSM Contracts, Scott.bell@msmcontracts.co.uk
Department of Justice Maghaberry Prison – Additional Cellular Accomodation TBC
Department of Education Integrated College Dungannon Woodvale Construction
Central Procurement Directorate Collaborative exercise for NICS cleaning, catering and ancillary services Lot 1: G4S, Lot 2: Aramark - mcauley-danny@aramark.ie, Lot:3 – The Mount Charles Group
Central Procurement Directorate Collaborative exercise for NICS temporary workers contract (selected lots) TBC
Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Farm Business Improvement Scheme TBC
Central Procurement Directorate Collaborative exercise for NICS Postal service 30m Whistl, personnel@whistl.co.uk
Department for Infrastructure Rathlin Island Ferry Service TBC
TOTAL

Brokerage


The Buy Social Brokerage website has been developed to help contractors who win public work find employability brokers who will help them deliver their Buy Social clause obligations. For more information please visit www.buysocialnibrokerage.org or alternatively email: info@buysocialni.org