The largest ever electronic reverse auction in the UK public sector has saved £100m on on office supply costs across seven central government departments and the Metropolitan Police.
The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) procurement agency, which facilitated the joint procurment led by the Ministry of Defence, said the reverse auction had cut costs for office stationery, printer cartridges, paper and magnetic media by up to 62%.
Along with the MoD, the procurement will cover HM Revenue and Customs, the Home Office, the Ministry of Justice, the Foreign Office, the Treasury and the Metropolitan Police.
The announcement of the deal comes just two days after the powerful Commons public accounts committee criticised the low level of e-procurement in central government in a report on the OGC’s subsidiary, OGCbusiness.solutions.
In a January hearing held as part of the MPs’ inquiry, OGCbs chief executive Alison Littley admittedthat she did not know how much public sector procurement takes place online. OGCbs did not track the use of online procurement in the public sector, Littley told the committee.
David Rothrie, head of the OGC office solutions team, said the “outstanding result” would demonstrate how collaboration could deliver the savings called for in the government’s Transforming Government Procurement strategy.
The result of the reverse auction will see Lyreco UK supply stationery, Office Depot UK provide paper supplies and Orion Media Marketing supply magnetic media and electronic office consumables.