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Pitching for government business becoming affordable for SMEs thanks to CCS, GDS, MHCLG collaboration



Emilia Cedeno of Crown Commercial Service and Poss Apostolou of DXW explain how collaborative initiatives by these government departments will put more public sector contracts within the grasp of SMEs.

The days when an SME would have to sacrifice up to 65 (non-earning) hours to pitch for a government contract are, if not over, then at least coming to an end, insists Emilia Cedeno, who is running the Digital Outcomes and Specialists (DOS) framework for government procurement agency the Crown Commercial Service.

In this video she describes the measures CCS is taking as it works towards a target of getting 33% of government business awarded to SMEs. Among these are a much shorter, more simple, public sector contract, written in plain English; work with government (including local government) buyers to improve briefs and to be clearer about budgets; and encouragement of ‘pre-tender engagement’ to open up contracts to not-just-the-usual-suspects.

Poss Apostolou, who has recently joined the private sector from GDS, describes the involvement of GDS in the moves to make procurement more SME-friendly and also the impact of MHCLG’s ‘Local Digital Declaration’ which councils must sign up to in order to pitch for funding for local digital projects.

Workshops with local authorities, which among other things will promote the procurement of digital components as a means of breaking up traditional, all-encompassing council service contracts, are being rolled out as part of the campaign.


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On 6th February 2019 we will be making five programmes about 'smart lives' in front of a studio audience. You could be in front of the camera or in our expert audience.

Our smart lives are no longer connected to place. We carry This Smart Life with us everywhere we go and overlapping coverage allows ever more ubiquitous connectivity. We no longer notice or count the spaces where we can connect, we only notice when connection is poor or when we cannot connect at all. This Smart Life is a whole new world. Programmes will be online from 11 Februaryand will also be available as podcasts.

10.15 - Coffee and Registration

11:00-11:40 – Smart Ubiquity
An end to commuting and to traffic congestion; work as state of mind not a place of labour; the future of private car ownership if there is one; my data total recall, voice bidable things; identity and personal security.

12:00-12:40 – Health & wellbeing – a smart approach
Wearable monitoring/diagnosis/treatment. Predictive analytics for healthier populations. The Caring Home. Self-management of wellbeing

13:00-13:40 – Data and security
Getting buy in from the public, standards in public cyber behaviour, empowering the citizen, the well-warned society, data-literate management and workforces

14:00-14:40 – The DroneZone - City Airspace Management
This programme is being sponsored by Dedrone, with guest panelists Amit Samani of Dedrone and Elaine Whyte of PwC. Further details on content will be published in due course.

15:00-15:40 - This Smart Life - Round Table
Five guests and our host discuss and respond to what they have heard during the day

All this takes place at 58 Victoria Embankment (the NESTA building) two minutes walk from London Blackfriars Station. Cameras are rolling by 10.30am and it's all over bar the handshakes by 4.00pm. Lunch and refreshments? Of course. But let’s be frank, it’s the quality of the brain food not the sandwiches that make this the single most useful ticket for those shaping the future of UK local public services.

An Audience with CLGdotTV is now running ten times a year. We invite a studio audience of around 50 to join us to make five CLGdotTV programmes. There are no power-points and the questions and interventions from the floor are valued as much as the panellists' contributions.

Some guests stay with us for just one programme and some stay for the lot. It’s a logistical nightmare but somehow we make it work. Each programme is broadcast on CLGdotTV. Plus we edit a 30-40 minute video summary of the day’s conversations with clips from all the debates.


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