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National Audit Office report: BBC Procurement: review by the Comptroller & Auditor General presented to the BBC Trust’s Finance and Strategy Committee

BBC Procurement: review by the Comptroller & Auditor General presented to the BBC Trust’s Finance and Strategy Committee

The NAO review looked at how the BBC manages its spending on goods and services and whether it is organised and equipped to deliver best value from its procurement. It also examined whether there was scope for the BBC to make further savings from its procurement arrangements.

The BBC Trust today (13 December 2007) published an independent report it had commissioned from the National Audit Office (NAO) on BBC procurement. "The Trust welcomes the NAO's positive findings about the BBC’s procurement practices. The NAO’s assessment that the BBC reflects good practice in procurement overall and is on course to deliver its targeted efficiency savings is very encouraging. We accept the NAO’s specific recommendations to improve processes further in order to deliver even more savings. These recommendations have been discussed with the BBC Executive and we are content that the Executive’s actions are an appropriate response." Sir John Bourn, Comptroller and Auditor General, said: "Overall the BBC has introduced good procurement practices to secure value for money when purchasing goods and services. However, there are still some important ways the BBC could improve and make further savings, and the implementation of recommendations made in my report will enable the BBC to make better use of licence fee-payers' money."

Jeremy Peat, BBC Trustee

 

BBC procurement

The NAO review looked at how the BBC manages its spending on goods and services and whether it is organised and equipped to deliver best value from its procurement. It also examined whether there was scope for the BBC to make further savings from its procurement arrangements.

The BBC spends more than £500 million each year on a wide range of goods and services, from broadcast specific products for programme makers, such as props, costume, and lighting, to more generic items for all its employees like stationery and travel, and according to the NAO, has adopted good procurement practices to improve significantly its procurement and deliver better value for money. The BBC is on course to achieve its target of £75 million savings from its procurement activities in the three years to March 2008

The report has identified a series of recommendations to improve the BBC’s procurement process further.

These include the BBC:

The Trust welcomes the BBC Executive’s commitment to develop further the use of e-procurement to reduce costs.

The Trust supports BBC Executive’s attempts to reduce the number of suppliers it has and increase the number of central contracts.

The Trust agrees with the NAO’s recommendation that a balance must be struck between reducing supplier numbers and keeping the supply base open.

The Trust endorses the BBC Executive approach to introducing other indicators as recommended by the NAO.

 

Publication details:

Published date: December 13, 2007