North Wales Police Force
North Wales Police Force covers an area of nearly 2,400 square miles and serves a population of just over 678,461 people including hundreds of thousands of visitors and tourists per year. The area of North Wales is made up of rural, coastal and urban areas. The Force covers the six unitary authority areas of Anglesey, Denbighshire, Conwy, Flintshire, Wrexham and Gwynedd (Anglesey) and the Forces Headquarters are located in Colwyn Bay.
The Force operates from some 63 stations and various office sites and employs over 2,583 personnel including Police Officers, Police Control staff, and non-uniformed support staff.
After North Wales Police Force took over the day-to-day management of the North Wales Fire and Rescue estate Andrew Mayers, Operations Manager, was tasked to review management processes across all the buildings, which included the cleaning service provision.
North Wales Police Force has over 60 buildings spread across various divisions – Eastern Division, 16 buildings; Central Division, 12 buildings; Western Division, 21 buildings; plus 14 other buildings spread across the three divisions.
In addition to this the Forces Estates Management Team also over sees and manages the North Wales Fire and Rescue Services Estate which includes some 52 stations and various office sites and employs some 1,000 personnel including Wholetime Firefighters, Firefighters on a Retained Duty System, Fire Control staff, and non-uniformed support staff.
It transpired that all the retained stations were being cleaned by fire officers and not by fully trained cleaning operatives. In addition to this five contractors, which included local Direct Service Organisations, were contracted to carry out cleaning at the other locations.
To reduce risk and operational time overseeing this provision it was decided to market test in September 2014. Litmus was successful in being awarded the tender management of the cleaning service provision.
In addition to this, once the project had been completed and the contract awarded in 2015, North Wales Police Force decided to carry out a similar exercise in 2016, once again using Litmus to manage the tender process.
Litmus was briefed on the below objectives:
- To achieve ongoing savings year-on-year during the contract term;
- To review / provide suggestions to improve work methodology and the efficiency of service;
- Maintain consistency of cleaning standards across both estates;
- To implement an improvement plan within the first year of contract commencement to ensure standards are maintained and consistently high across both estates;
- For both contracts to be based on guaranteed Fixed Price arrangements for the contract terms, with hourly variation charges guaranteed including out of hours, weekends and bank holidays; and
- For TUPE Regulations to be applied to both projects.
Mike Neales, the Litmus Partnership, said: “One of the key considerations for when we were compiling the tender specifications was the geographical areas that both parties covered, and ensuring this could be effectively managed.
“We were fully immersed throughout both tender projects, and supported the operations team on staff and union meetings as well as regular liaison and guidance on various matters.
“We shortlisted three companies for each project, who then went on to present to the individual tender panels before a final decision was made.”
North Wales Fire and Rescue appointed a contractor for an initial three year term, which resulted in savings of around 10% being made. Following the three year term, the contract was then extended for a further two years which Litmus helped to broker without any inflationary increases.
After a detailed analysis of the tenders submitted North Wales Police Force decided to retain its in-house operation. The cleaning team underwent a re-structure and the cleaning processes were reviewed leading to improved productivity rates and operational standards.
“We have an ongoing working partnership with the North Wales Police Force and have recently assisted them with the tender management and procurement of vending machines and a fully managed vending operation at one of their new build Police Stations. We also carry out annual audits for North Wales Fire and Rescue to ensure the contractor is maintaining operational standards as per the tender specification.”