June Newsletter

Posted in: Events, General News

In this month’s e-newsletter from the team at Ready for Business we will update you with news, events and case studies from the Developing Markets for Third Sector Providers programme.


NHS and Third Sector: Going Beyond Engagement

In order to support the actions required to achieve the 2020 Vision for achieving sustainable quality in Scotland’s healthcare, the Quality Alliance Board (QAB) has endorsed proposals to strengthen the strategic engagement between NHS Boards and the Third Sector. To assist this, an Engagement Matrix tool has been launched to help take stock of its work with the third sector as a partner in the planning, design and delivery of NHS services. In support of this, the team at Ready for Business will soon be delivering its successful Partners for Change programme to help one NHS Board take stock of their current relationship with the third sector, agree a shared agenda and outcomes, accelerate the development of cross-sector relationships, and quickly move from planning to action. Find a recent example of our area-based Partners for Change initiative here.

Purchasing from the Third Sector: Emerging Evidence

Public authorities across the country are recognising the benefits of involving the third sector as suppliers of goods and services … but how widespread is this public sector purchasing from the third sector and at what scale? In order to begin to answer this question the team at Ready for Business has conducted some ground-breaking research in partnership with North Lanarkshire Council. This research has examined the scale, scope, pattern, and trend in purchasing from the third sector by one of Scotland’s largest local authorities. This research represents one of the most comprehensive accounts available anywhere in the UK of the purchasing relationship between a public authority and the third sector. Read a briefing on the findings of the research here. To find out more about the research or to find out how your local authority can benchmark its purchasing from the third sector contact Jonathan.

Eyes of Europe on Public Social Partnerships in Scotland

The European Commission has approved a new EU Social Enterprise Network to share good practice on the social economy across the EU. The project will also inform social enterprise actions within the new Structural Fund Programmes across member states. The EU SEN is being led by Poland but involves 9 member states, including Scottish representation from Ready for Business partners, Social Firms Scotland and Senscot. We are delighted to report that Low Moss Public Social Partnership (PSP) has been selected as a good practice case study for peer review at the next meeting of the SEN in Trento in September 2013 – further evidence that Scotland is leading the way on PSP developments across the EU. To find out more contact Pauline Graham.

Making it simpler for public sector buyers and third sector suppliers

Ready for Business partners were delighted to have a demonstration of the new Standardised Pre-Qualification Questionnaire system recently. The new system should make it easier for both buyers and suppliers in the public procurement arena. We recognise that introducing a single database for pre-qualification information and working towards standardisation of PQQs is not an easy task and that it will be resourceful and challenging. That said, it is an important element within the current phase of the Reform Programme and we need to acknowledge the efforts of the Public Procurement Reform Board, colleagues at Scottish Procurement Directorate and the Supplier Engagement Working Group in supporting the progress of this initiative.


National Event: Developing Markets for Third Sector Providers

In our last newsletter we mentioned that we were organising a National Event in June. We are delighted to say that John Swinney MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth has indicated that he would like to participate. In order to accommodate this and to open the event to the widest possible audience we are rescheduling to 8th August. At the event, delegates from across the Scottish Public Sector will hear a number of speakers from Ready for Business, as well as organisations which have benefited from the programme, describe the challenges, progress and outcomes to date. Delegates will have the opportunity to take part in group discussion and offer input into the future direction of the programme. Details will follow soon, but in the meantime please keep an eye on www.readyforbusiness.org.

On the Road with Ready for Business

As the latest in our series of local engagement events, Ready for Business ran a pan-Tayside event at the West Park Conference Centre in Dundee on the 25th of June. This successful event brought together 35 delegates from Dundee, Angus and Perth & Kinross Councils as well as representatives from NHS Tayside, Abertay University and Tayside Procurement Consortium, all engaging in discussion with leading local third sector representatives. The Ready for Business team is already following up with support to participating public authorities who are looking at options for engaging with the third sector and developing Community Benefit Clauses in a number of procurements. If you would like a similar event in your area please contact Ryan Horan.

Social Value in Commissioning: East Ayrshire

Ready for Business are running another Social Value in Commissioning event in East Ayrshire on Wednesday 28th August. The event will bring together public sector commissioning and procurement staff with enterprising third sector organisations  to focus on improving co-operation. The day will be interactive and will feature facilitated discussion, Q&A sessions and workshops on a variety of topics including Social Value in Commissioning, the Public Social Partnership model and Community Benefit Clauses. If you want more information or are interested in coming along please contact Ryan Horan to register your interest.

Case Studies

Royal Edinburgh Hospital Public Social Partnership

In collaboration with NHS Lothian, City of Edinburgh Council, Queen Margaret University and the third sector, the Royal Edinburgh Hospital campus redevelopment programme has been identified as a major opportunity to redesign services through the collaborative application of the Public Social Partnership (PSP) Model. With support and guidance from Ready for Business, two work streams of activity are underway and beginning to reshape the way that health services are delivered. Read more about the work of the Public Social Partnership project here.

Partners for Change: Fife Early Years Service

Fife Council and members of its Early Years Strategy Group from NHS Fife and the Third Sector recently participated in the Partners for Change process, delivered by Ready for Business partners. This process was intended to review delivery of Early Years services and explore the opportunities to involve the third sector more in the planning and delivery of local services. Find out more about Fife Council’s experience with the Partners for Change process here.


Where can I find those enterprising third sector organisations that are interested in tendering?

The Ready for Business team has established a Social Enterprise Register that acts as a resource for commissioners and procurement officers and provides contact details for each social enterprise, a summary of the services they deliver and the locations in which they operate. For more information see here.

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