ABERDEEN CITY COUNCIL. Name of Committee : Resources Management Committee

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1 ABERDEEN CITY COUNCIL Name of Committee : Resources Management Committee Date of Meeting : 29 March 2007 Title of Report : CRM System Procurement Lead Officer : Jacek Nowak, Head of Customer Relations Management, Continuous Improvement Author of Report : Jacqui Gale, Customer Service Development Manager (34) 6809 Other Involvement : Jacek Nowak, Head of CRM, Continuous Improvement Karen Donnelly, Legal Manager, Resources Sandra Massey, Operations Manager, Continuous Improvement Matt Bailey, Modernisation and Innovation Manager, Continuous Improvement Ian Watt, egovernment Manager, Continuous Improvement Lyle Smith, Business Analyst, Continuous Improvement Craig Innes, Procurement Manager, Resources Improvement Service Consultation undertaken with : Jane MacEachran, City Solicitor, Resources Susan Cooper, City Chamberlain, Resources Councillor Fletcher Councillor J Stewart Corporate Management Team Heads of Service Mike Middleton, GMB Steve Robb, TG&WU Michael Scroggie, Unison Summary of Report The purpose of this report is to update Committee on the work of the National Customer Relations Management (CRM) Project, a project led by the Improvement Service to increase the volume and intensity of collaboration around CRM. The report outlines the options considered and highlights the intended level of collaboration - the shared procurement and collaborative local deployment of a CRM System, led by the Improvement Service, to support the delivery of high quality services. The report specifically seeks approval for an extension to the normal use of the ICT Purchasing Protocol for the use of Catalist (previously known as GCat and S-Cat) for the procurement of

2 the CRM system, and it is recommended that delegated powers approval be granted with respect to the appointment of a preferred supplier. Recommendations It is recommended that Committee: 1. Approves the procurement of a CRM system 2. Approves the extension of the OGC Buying Solutions protocol, for the purposes of this procurement only. 3. Approves that powers be delegated to the Corporate Director for Continuous Improvement, and the Corporate Director for Resources, in consultation with the City Chamberlain, the City Solicitor and the Convenor of Resources Management Committee, to approve the selection of the preferred supplier. The outcome will be reported to a subsequent committee. Links to the Community Plan and to a Partnership for Aberdeen The proposals within this report support the Council s vision to deliver high quality, best value services as set out in the Community Plan. Furthermore the implementation of a CRM system will support the further development and implementation of the Customer Contact Strategy, specifically the network of Customer Access Points and the Contact Centre. These developments underpin the objectives detailed within the Corporate Plan, the Continuous Improvement Plan and deliver against the policy statement within A Partnership for Aberdeen. (Policy Statement 1.6 Develop a contact centre and a network of one stop shops to provide ease of access to public services.'). Implementation This procurement is being run under the Government Official Journal of European Union (OJEU) procurement framework. It is recommended that procurement through the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) Buying Solutions catalogue based purchasing scheme, Catalist, (formerly known as Gcat and S-Cat), be adopted to ensure expediency in the procurement process. The Improvement Service will lead the procurement process, in conjunction with the 4 other councils, supported by business, technical and legal specialists across all participating authorities. Implementation will conform to all necessary Council policy, legislation and good management practice. Subject to agreement between all parties (recognising that each Council may have different requirements and be starting from different stages of readiness) a system could be purchased as early as the period from the end of May 2007 to December Phased implementation could then follow in a phased manner over the following 6-24 months. The implementation plan will be developed in conjunction with the appointed contractor, key officers and the Improvement Service. This will therefore ensure that opportunities for shared learning and effective use of resource are realised. Resource Implications People: The project will be led by CRM however significant input will be required from other teams within Continuous Improvement and other 2

3 Service areas. It should be noted that specialist input will be sought from the Policy and Advice Team (Resources ) throughout the procurement and contracting process. The implementation of a new system will naturally require additional duties to be undertaken or existing processes to change. The extent of impact on existing roles and responsibilities cannot be defined at this point in the process, however full training and management support will be provided. Finance: The developments will be funded from the approved Capital Fund for Modernising Government CRM and the funding allocated as part of the Modernising Government Fund bid (MGF3). Revenue costs will be funded by a re-direction of existing service budgets, as agreed with the Corporate Management Team. A report has been prepared for the National Shared Services Board on the 21 st February to obtain agreement for additional funding over 2 years to: Support the implementation of the strategy across the initial participating council and beyond. Exploit the value from options 1 and 2 and help inform how benefits and savings from further collaboration can be exploited. Support the knowledge management dissemination across the wider local government community and thereby grow the CRM community of practice. Systems & Technology: Property: Other Equipment: Other: The key driver for deploying a CRM system is as an enabler for the wider CRM programme, which is focused on the improvement of services to citizens, together with real expectation of improving the efficiency and the effectiveness of the organisation by focussing resources on those in most need. There are no direct property implications. There are no other equipment implications There are no other implications Other Implications Health & Safety: Risk Management: There are no direct Health and Safety Implications Failure to procure a CRM system would constrain the development of and implementation of the wider Modernisation and Transformation programme and may therefore negatively influence customers perception of Aberdeen City Council as a whole. 3

4 Human Rights/ Equalities/Diversity: It is essential that a CRM system supports the collation of management information for the purposes of monitoring social inclusion, equality and diversity. Sustainability: Environmental: Social: Economic: Construction: There are no specific environmental issues There are no specific social issues There will be ongoing licensing and maintenance costs, these will be funded from within existing budgets. There are no construction costs. Signature : 4

5 Main Considerations 1.0 Background 1.1 Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a complex mixture of organisational strategy, technology and people. It is concerned with improving services to citizens, from improving the way we respond to customers, to changing how we interact with our colleagues within the council. As the quality of customer service in the private sector has improved, customer expectations have been raised, and the quality of customer experience delivered by local authorities must also rise to meet these growing expectations. 1.2 At the heart of the changes, lie the various routes customers use to contact the council. To date therefore our focus has been very much on delivery of the first stages of our Customer Contact Strategy. The last 18 months have therefore seen the development of the first phase of the Contact Centre (July 2006) and delivery of 2 of our network of Customer Access Points (Mastrick in May 2006 and Kincorth in February 2007). The development of these channels will be ongoing, however it is now time to support the organisation through the implementation of a CRM system. 1.3 Improvements in customer service from CRM are expected to range from more rapid and focused responses to enquiries, with the potential of reduced transaction costs, through to proactive contacts with customers to anticipate and manage potential issues. Operational CRM is therefore seen as a key enabler for customers wishing to access our services, improving the efficiency of traditional and innovative channels. 1.4 The CRM system will support the members of staff dealing with an enquiry by: Providing a history of the customer's contacts with the authority Providing access to information to assist the current enquiry Logging information to the Operational Teams for further processing Interrogating Operational systems to determine the progress of a case / enquiry. The CRM technology will also facilitate partnerships between Customer Services staff, who will be a primary source of contact with our customers, and operational staff. In addition operational staff, Elected Members and external customers (through self-service channels) are all potential users of the solution. 2.0 Progress to date 2.1 The Improvement Service initiated a national CRM project and a launch workshop was hosted at the end of October 2006 to begin the process of assessing the feasibility of increasing collaborative working around CRM, in particular a collaborative approach to procuring and implementing a CRM solution. 2.2 The outcome from the discussions was that the Improvement Service saw merit in a piece of work being undertaken. To date this has involved discussions with Council's for the purpose of exploring to what extent Council's could usefully collaborate - the output from this work was a Business Case which was presented to the National Shared Services Board in December 06. To date there has been strong support from the National Shared Services Board. 5

6 2.3 The business case work evaluated a number of options where potential savings can be achieved through: Option 0 - non-collaboration; Option 1 - shared procurement; Option 2 - collaborative local deployment; Option 3 - shared back office integration tools; Option 4 - shared maintenance and support contracts; Option 5 - shared national deployment across a common infrastructure; and Option 6 - a nationally delivered service. At this point, participating council's preferences are to push ahead with and to focus on Options 1 and 2, Shared Procurement and collaborative deployment and to have some support for that, recognising that options 3-6 represent a potential longer term collaboration. 2.4 A steering group comprising representatives of the 4 councils (Aberdeen City Council, West Lothian, Borders and Inverclyde) has been formed together with facilitation, project management and procurement support provided by the Improvement Service. A series of meetings and interview have been held with key stakeholders in all participating councils to capture requirements and to provide input to the business case development. 2.5 Work to develop a common set of business requirements for all 4 councils has been completed. This was initiated on the 08 January 2007, when a meeting was held by the Improvement Service, with Aberdeen City Council officers to further explore the development of the common requirements specification. Subsequently a series of meetings was held internally with key officers and Elected Members to further define essential and desirable requirements for the CRM system. The outcome was input to the common specification developed by the Improvement Service, which forms part of the tender documentation that has now been issued. 3.0 Procurement 3.1 In order to meet the requirements of the participating councils to undertake an early system purchase, the various procurement options were discussed and evaluated and the OGC Buying Solutions (Catalist) was identified as the preferred method to allow for expediency. Research was undertaken to confirm that suppliers who may be of interest to the council were not 'excluded'. It is therefore recommended that Committee approve the preferred procurement process. Should this procurement route not be supported, it would be necessary for us to withdraw from the National CRM Project and undertake a separate procurement. This would naturally result in delays for implementation and would not be in the interest of providing Best Value. 3.2 An Invitation to Tender (ITT) to support the procurement process has been completed and a timetable for the procurement and evaluation agreed. The timetable is structured to allow participating councils to begin deployment of the CRM system from June 2007 onwards, subject to agreement between all parties (recognising that each Council may have different requirements and be starting from different stages of readiness). 6

7 3.3 The preferred supplier will be identified following a robust evaluation process undertaken by the consortium (key officers from participating councils and the Improvement Service). In order to maintain momentum and support efficient service delivery within the new Customer Contact channels, it is vital that the preferred supplier is approved as quickly as possible. It is therefore recommended that Delegated Powers be given to the Corporate Director for Continuous Improvement and the Corporate Director for Resources to approve the selection. 4.0 Conclusion 4.1 In summary therefore, it is recommended that Committee: 1. Approves the procurement of a CRM system 2. Approves the extension of the OGC Buying Solutions protocol, for the purposes of this procurement only. 3. Approves that powers be delegated to the Corporate Director for Continuous Improvement, and the Corporate Director for Resources, in consultation with the City Chamberlain, the City Solicitor and the Convenor of Resources Management Committee, to approve the selection of the preferred supplier. The outcome will be reported to a subsequent committee. 7

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