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F15/125

Training with QA

Request Description

I would like to seek clarification on these questions below:

1. Has there been any request to make a purchase of ICT technical training or any other training by any department with QA training from 1st of February 2015. Please state what have they requested to be purchased, by whom and state the exact amount to be yet purchased.

2. Currently have any purchase orders been raised or will be raised by any employee of the ICT technical or any other department with QA training since 1st February 2015. Please state exact amount and who has purchased it with the exact requirements and dates selected for the training courses.

3. Please state if the ICT technical department or any other department has secured 3 quotes for this training and provide details of what decision making criteria was used to select QA training as the supplier.

4. Have the ICT technical training department or any other department searched the web to find and secure new training companies to gain the best value for the taxpayer? Note: There appears to be trend to continuously use QA training for repeatedly buying training courses at a much higher price without even testing the market to see if tax payers can receive savings by finding new suppliers who provide the same training with the same quality at a much lower price.

5. If the ICT department or any other department purchased a skills licence how have they gone about justifying the decision to pre-purchase a block of training without even securing a similar bulk purchase discount price from other providers ?

6. We believe that any remaining budgets being utilised from 1st of Feb 2015 are purely to utilise remaining budgets of the ICT and other departments without a genuine/real training requirements. (I.e. budget dumping).This is a gross waste of taxpayers' money, are the buyers in the organisation aware of the consequences of unlawfully spending taxpayers money?

7. We also believe that ICT and other departments are continuously purchasing new skills licence training credits to extend their unused ICT technical training credits, has the buying manger in ICT or another department made a purchase in the last 3 years with a view to extend their skills licence unused credits ?

8. How exactly does the tender or the three quote process work within your council? Also when and where was this openly advertised?  How many suppliers were short listed? What formal mechanism was used to select the supplier? Was any pricing information shared with QA training to match or beat the price and thus any unfair advantage was given to QA training?

9. My research shows that all departments (Inc.ICT) must be fully scrutinised to see if the current procurement processes are designed to give an unfair advantage to the existing training provider(s) thereby resulting in a loss to the taxpayers and I will proactively monitor this for the coming year to see who/how the training contracts are awarded.

10.Please provide full details with name, telephone number of the purchasing manager or any other responsible manager who allocates budgets and decides on how ICT or training is purchased.

11. Please provide any formal documentation which clearly states the policy which should be adopted by the organisation to purchase ICT technical or any other training.

12. Please provide an escalation process for public complaints to investigate how ICT technical training has been purchased.

Request Date2 March 2015
Requested byIndividual
Released Date  

1 April 2015      

Response
  1. There have been no requests to purchase ICT technical training of any kind since February 2015.
     
  2. No purchase orders have been raised for QA training since February 2015.
     
  3. Not applicable as no orders raised.
     
  4. Not applicable as no technical training has been procured.
     
  5. The ICT department have not purchased a skills license.
     
  6. The ICT department seek to use taxpayer funds responsibly. In that regard the ICT service has saved year on year revenue costs of approximately £420,000 per year since the shared IT service between Stevenage Borough Council and East Herts Council has been set up.
     
  7. The department has not purchased new skills license training credits as suggested and no plans to purchase any.
     
  8. Not applicable as no training has been purchased.
     
  9. Noted.
     
  10. Peter Wain, ICT Services, Security and Standards Manager. E-mail peter.wain@stevenage.gov.uk. Tel 01438 242242
     
  11. There is no policy that specifically deals with the purchase of IT Training.
     
  12. Any complaints about the service can be made using the complaints process published on our website.
Refused

                                                           

Refusal