CCS Showcase proves to be a big hit at Procurex North

This week our wider public sector customer team headed to Procurex North at Manchester Central. With our brand new CCS Showcase stand right at the heart of the exhibition, we were all looking forward to meeting visitors from across the public procurement industry.

CCS Stand Procurex North

Our drop-in advice bar featured a different zone on either side – one for buyers and one for suppliers. This provided two distinct spaces for our customer team to help customers, and colleagues from our policy team to engage with suppliers. I wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who visited us over the course of the day, it was great to chat with such a varied selection of people and organisations and discuss your diverse procurement needs.

CCS Feedback Wall

Our new feedback walls in each zone gave us the opportunity to gather thoughts from our customers and suppliers on what they feel we’re doing right and what we need to change or improve upon. The incorporation of social value in our frameworks and a better website were just some of the topics that came up on the buyer wall, with simplifying our eSourcing tool appearing as a topic on the supplier zone. We will be reviewing all feedback from the walls and using it to help us make further improvements going forward.

Malcolm Harrison Speech

Just before lunch we sat down for a speech from our Chief Executive Malcolm Harrison in the keynote arena, where he discussed the current state of public sector procurement and the ways we are trying to make it easier to do business with CCS. Key topics included the much anticipated Crown Marketplace project to create an easy to use online buying portal, centralising our customer help desk and the importance of saving our customers both time and money. To find out more, you can view Malcolm’s keynote presentation.

Procurex North Training Zone

In the afternoon, we ran 5 different sessions in our dedicated training zone featuring speakers from CCS and other organisations including YPO, Crescent Purchasing Consortium (CPC) and the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA). Topics included:

To view the speakers’ presentations, simply click on the links above.

The sessions were very popular with visitors – so much so that the majority were standing room only! David Gigg from our Disputes and Policy Implementation team took the opportunity to launch our official policy on social value in the final session, which is a huge development, and the panel discussion and questions from the audience afterwards were very interesting.

Following the success of Procurex North, in just a month we will be attending Procurex South taking place at Olympia London. If you couldn’t make it to Procurex North, make sure to look out for our CCS Showcase on 20 April.

If you want to find out more about how we can help you, ask a question, leave feedback or sign up to our newsletter please get in touch.

Why are public sector fleet teams using vehicle telematics?

I often get asked about the benefits of using vehicle telematics and a 2016 iGov survey found that 57% of public sector fleets have already introduced or plan to introduce telematics, so I thought I’d share some guidance with you on what exactly telematics is and how it could help your organisation.

Getting started with vehicle telematics

Vehicle telematics is a way of monitoring the location, movement, status and behaviour of a vehicle or fleet of vehicles. Vehicle monitoring is typically achieved by fitting vehicles with GPS (Global Positioning System). Other features can also be added that record and track driver behaviour and vehicle activity, such as fuel consumption.

Telematics can help you reduce risk and environmental impact, and improve your cost control and productivity. We have found that for every £1 spent on telematics, you could achieve a £3 cost saving. It also supports the whole life cost management of vehicles by providing live, operational data.

We know that for many organisations you will need to write a business case to demonstrate the benefits versus cost to secure the necessary investment. If you don’t yet have a business case read our guide to developing a business case and the benefits of investment for useful advice, including key considerations to help you get started.

Whether you are already using telematics or want to introduce this for the first time, our Vehicle Telematics (RM3754) framework can help to ensure you are getting best value.

If you have any questions about vehicle telematics or any of our other fleet services, our team are happy to help. Please get in touch.

New Courier Services framework launched

This new framework provides all public sector customers with a quick and easy route for buying courier services.

Developed in collaboration with YPO, it gives you access to a wide range of courier services at competitive prices.

Courier boxes

Services include:

  • collection and delivery of documents and parcels
  • secure services for sensitive and high value consignments
  • secure collection, storage and delivery of examination papers
  • dedicated networks
  • security screening of internal mail

Over 50% of the suppliers are SMEs and all suppliers will use their expertise to help you improve efficiency and achieve best value.

Improved efficiency and savings can be achieved through rationalisation and standardisation of services, and economies of scale can be maximised as the more customers that use a route the bigger the savings for all – this is known as ‘optimisation of networks’.

To find out more visit the Courier Services (RM3798) framework page.

Got a question? Get in touch.

Southampton City Council saves over £17,000 on tyres

Tyre Being Fitted

Southampton City Council has saved more than 10% on its annual tyre bill using the Crown Commercial Service tyres agreement.

The customer

The fleet services team at Southampton City Council were looking to make savings on tyres and reduce the frequency of replacement tyres being required.

The council’s fleet includes 360 vans, 37 refuse collection vehicles (RCVs), 17 heavy goods vehicles, 13 minibuses, 6 road sweepers and 4 cars – all of which provide vital services across the city.

The solution

The council decided to fit Michelin tyres on all its vehicles through a direct award using the Crown Commercial Service Supply and Fit of Tyres agreement.

The results

The council saw an immediate spend reduction of 11% for the year and a further 3% reduction the following year, as greater numbers of Michelin tyres were rolled out.

In total, tyre expenditure dropped by over £17,000.

Southampton City Council’s Fleet Services said:

“All local authorities are working hard to maximise value from their budgets and fitting Michelin tyres via the Crown Commercial Service framework has delivered noticeable savings to our fleet running costs. We’re getting improved longevity and durability from every tyre we fit; it’s particularly noticeable on the RCV fleet, which is arguably the toughest on tyres.”

In addition, technicians from ATS Euromaster’s Southampton centre provide an onsite fitment service for the council. The technicians regroove as many tyres as possible, extending tyre life by up to 25%. Once the regrooved tyre has worn, it is retreaded providing almost identical performance to that of a new truck tyre – whilst reducing environmental impact and raw material consumption.

Get involved

To find out more about the latest Supply and Fit of Tyres agreement and how you can make significant savings, get in touch.

Ready to buy now? Visit the tyre framework agreement web page.

Reminder – changes to car tax and vehicle salary sacrifice from 1 April

Following my blog last month about upcoming changes to Vehicle Excise Duty (commonly referred to as car tax), I’m just giving you a gentle reminder as we get closer to them coming into effect on 1 April. With changes to vehicle salary sacrifice schemes being introduced on the same date, I also wanted to make you aware of these and how our frameworks can still help you achieve great value.

Vehicle Excise Duty changes
Any new car registered from 1 April will be subject to new Vehicle Excise Duty rules. This will affect all new vehicles purchased or leased via the frameworks.

The first year duty charges will also particularly impact the suppliers on lots 1, 2 and 5 of our Vehicle Hire Services (RM1062) framework, as they replace vehicles every 7-12 months to ensure that their fleet remains fuel-efficient and to the required high standard. We are working closely with suppliers to understand the impact and minimise any framework price increases that may be proposed. We will update you on the outcome of these discussions in due course.

For more information, view full details of the car tax changes.

Vehicle salary sacrifice changes
You may have heard about recent legislative changes that will alter the way salary sacrificed vehicles are taxed. These will also come into effect on 1 April. Due to the excellent terms we have secured with vehicle manufacturers and the competitiveness of our vehicle leasing companies, we are confident that our fleet frameworks still support great value for salary sacrifice schemes.

Salary sacrifice vehicles are often used as a way to replace employee owned vehicles (also known as grey fleet) being used for business miles. They are typically newer and more efficient vehicles, resulting in a better value solution for public sector organisations. Employers also have a responsibility under duty of care for their employees and maintained, newer vehicles can support this.

The Vehicle Purchase (RM1070) framework already offers attractive standard discounts of an average of 32%, and our Vehicle Lease and Fleet Management (RM3710) framework gives you quick access to live quotations from 12 funders in the market, enabling clear price comparisons.

Through our online fleet portal you can see the extensive range of vehicles available and have access to live quotes. You can then work with your appointed salary sacrifice scheme provider to offer this out across your organisation.

Interested in ultra low emission vehicles? These are unaffected by the changes to salary sacrifice scheme taxation, and support the operating of vehicles with lower emissions, and less damaging environmental impacts. Find out more about the cities going ultra low, and what you could do in your organisation.

If you have any questions about our fleet frameworks or the upcoming taxation changes, our team are happy to help. Please get in touch.

Technology products flash sale

Save money on IT products by taking part in our flash sale this March.

We have been working with a number of suppliers on our Technology Products 2 agreement (RM3733) to offer you huge savings on a range of products, including desktops and laptops.

The sale begins today and will run all month, or until stock is sold out. Stock availability is limited and will be sold on a first come, first served basis.

These short-term deals with manufacturers such as Hewlett Packard, Dell, Lenovo, Samsung, Apple and Toshiba could help you save up to 35%.

CCS Technology Products Flash Sale

Accessing the deals
Whether you are a school, college, local council, NHS trust, charity or police force you can view the deals, by logging in to the Purchasing Platform. Some of the sale products will appear on the landing page and you can click through to the full list.

If you do not have a log on, register now

Got a question? Get in touch