The potential for collaborative procurement to help close the gap between projected income and costs could be described as the sector’s best kept secret, so it was refreshing to see it revealed in the recent article by Nick Petford and Andy Davies (“Stuff and fiscal sense”, Opinion, 11 April).
The human resources departments of around three-quarters of UK universities are already in the know thanks to the long-established Educational Competencies Consortium, which operates as a not-for-profit company creating and sourcing role analysis, job evaluation and reward products and services. Interestingly, the ECC’s development was led by HR rather than procurement professionals.
By shining a light on successful arrangements such as these, the sector can develop effective new models. As with other forms of collaboration such as mergers, it is far better for the sector to investigate this itself than wait to be compelled to do so.