Yorkshire and Humber Public Services Network

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The Yorkshire and Humber Public Services Network Project was formed after all 22 regional Local Authority Chief Executive Officers signed a letter requesting the production of an Outline Business Case (OBC) which would consider the advantages and potential cost savings that a move to a regional PSN could bring.

Funded by local authority partners at this stage, as well as with a grant from the Regional Improvements and Efficiency Programme (RIEP) the OBC was published in the May of 2010. It proposed that there was a potential for savings of approximately £10million over 5 years, and that additional savings would be forthcoming from providing the foundation for the development of shared services and consolidation of facilities.

Agreement to proceed to procurement was given, and YHPSN programme started the process by creating the Partnership Management Board (PMB), which is the overarching governance board. This is an unincorporated association, which means that in itself it has no legal standing and cannot borrow money or enter into contracts, but it is made up of the contributing partners, one of which will stand as the lead partner for any required procurement or contractual arrangement.

Leeds City Council, as the largest authority in the region, became the lead partner for these procurements and hosted the YHPSN Project team. Comprising of Geoff Prowling, a procurement expert, as Project Director, Jon Browne as Technical Lead, David Grooby as Project Manager, John Wilkinson as legal advisor, and with project support from the Leeds Projects, Programmes and Procurement Unit (PPPU), particularly Helen Bowker and Martine Maxwell, the project team set about their work, reporting to the PMB.

The Partnership Management Board, which was now comprised of eleven of the local authorities, was quickly joined by the four Police Services in the region, and the two Passenger Transport Executives from West and South Yorkshire. The Statement of Requirements was produced and agreed. In the closing stages of the exercise we were joined by the then Yorkshire Strategic Health Authority representing the NHS across the region. The Statements of Requirements were based on the simple premise of Consolidate, Standardise, Simplify and Share.

By the time the PSN procurements went to market, the YHPSN had over 50 partners, representing all local authorities bar one, the Police, Transport and Health, with over half being health trusts, including the Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust, the second largest Teaching Hospitals trust in Europe. This represented the largest and most holistic regional PSN ever constructed.
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The first two PSN procurements were conducted under the Government Procurement Service frameworks for PSN Connectivity (RM860 - PSNC) and PSN Services (RM1498 - PSNS), both of which, after careful and thorough evaluation, were awarded to Virgin Media Business.
The YHPSN Contracts have so far realised between £25 and £30 million of savings across the region and new opportunities for exploitation and innovation are being developed which will realise both further savings, and operational efficiencies
(See Projects section).

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