Procurement and contract management skill levels have recently come to the fore with a number of high level reports highlighting deficiencies in current practice and recommending training to improve the situation.
A recent ANAO a report recommended procurement training for all Commonwealth delegates with the ability to procure over 10k.
This was followed by the NSW Commission of Audit’s interim report: Public Sector Management released in February 2012. In this Interim Report, the Commission of Audit examines public sector management and makes the following comments:
- The Commission has seen pockets of good practice in the NSW public sector, but generally managerial performance is far from excellent
- Capabilities need improving and the Commission is surprised at the low importance that has been attached to financial, people and asset management
- Information systems are complex and cumbersome and often non-existent.
In addition numerous media articles have criticised government for irresponsible procurement and breach of Commonwealth guidelines. Additionally there has been local government Association advice/concern that councils are able to procure up to 150 K without competitive bidding.
Allan Asher, the then Commonwealth Ombudsman with oversight for ACT recently expressed his dismay at the lack of accountability for program outcomes and government spending in ACT.
This supports Transformed’s ethos that efficient procurement and contract management are the essential core of a productive economy. When administrators work together to buy goods and services, then government and organisations can achieve better value for shareholders and taxpayers. Consequently, it is important to have a strong community of skilled procurement and contract management professionals with consistent standards and training to manage these crucial activities.