Procurement’s Role in Local Government

 In Resources, Whitepapers

A case study examining local government procurement in Victoria.

Written by local government procurement & probity consultant, and former local council Head of Procurement, Silke Therhaag, the new Open Windows Software white-paper isolates future key challenges facing local government procurement managers particularly. As ever more is demanded of resource pressed councils, outsourcing is increasingly a solution for everything from critical community services to minor projects.

Local councils in Australia spend roughly the same as federal government (around $34bn per annum). So, procurement is now a vital and essential part of what councils do.

Indeed, it is increasingly a core capability to deliver any council’s core services and programme provision. And, as councils aggregate more stakeholders are increasingly concerned with provenance, so the role of procurement will become more crucial to engineering better outcomes in future.

This growing reliance and increasing accountability demands that local government procurement has to be built upon good process, best practices and professional standards.

Which, like any other organisation vested in professional procurement, demands investment  in building the three levers of procurement capability – people, process and technology – to better manage supply lines in our ever more complex and volatile world. Increasingly, through automation perhaps.

This white-paper from Open Windows Software examines local government procurement within Victoria as a case study of the many growing issues and obstacles facing professional standard procurement within local government today. It addresses the current framework, the principles, the issues, the standard practices, the gaps and the difficulties in current approaches. It even speculates on what might be included within the new VIC Local Govt Act to succeed s.186 of the current act.

Yet most of all, this white paper distils the reality of current procurement practice in Victoria, and how it might improve.

In this way, it is an invaluable new resource for all those working in and around procurement within all local councils.

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Whitepaper - Procurement's Role in Local Government

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About the Author

Silke Therhaag is a Procurement and Probity consultant with some 16 years experience in large corporations such as AXA, Ericsson, Ford and Mazda as well as the local and state government sector. Silke is currently contracted as a consultant by the Victorian State Government (DELWP) where she coordinates 9 regional procurement excellence networks of 79 councils in Victoria to encourage greater collaboration amongst councils as well as providing consultancy services to individual councils. 

Silke Therhaag is an accredited procurement probity practitioner with thorough and applied knowledge of the principles and practicalities that attend to the process of tendering in the public sector. She has a legal background and being a German trained barrister, Silke’s global commercial contract and negotiation expertise as well as her lateral thinking skills and can-do attitude enable her to achieve significant change and strategic impact for stakeholders through identifying and managing new opportunities.

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