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UK public sector outsourcing post-Carillion

The UK government has settled on some guidelines for outsourcing following the collapse of Carillion earlier this year. Readers may remember that there were serious questions over governance of the contracts the company held, not only from its own corporate point of view but from the government departments’ oversight.

Bloomberg and others are now reporting that new guidelines have emerged, and they echo reports we’ve mentioned previously. Partners will have their social impact taken into account more than ever before and businesses will issue “living wills”, it will be announced next week, to help administrate the fallout if they collapse.

(There is an argument that says a company that collapses may be the worst possible judge of what should happen next but we’re going to let that one pass, quietly – we expect someone has already thought of it and more detail will emerge).

Serco has volunteered to be the first with the living will idea, and this will involve disclosing a lot of its organisational intricacies to the government so there is less to unpick and deduce if a collapse actually happens (there is no suggestion that this is at all likely).

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