PROFESSOR GARY L. STURGESS ‘JUST ANOTHER PAPERCLIP?’ REPORT PUBLISHED

On the 31 March, 2017, the BSA published the ‘Just Another Paperclip?’ report by Professor Gary L. Sturgess. Speaking on the report’s publication, BSA Chief Executive Mark Fox said:

“It is sometime since an in depth look at public procurement and markets was conducted and this report is a timely contribution to the ongoing discussion in this area. It is an independent report and it contains interesting comments and suggestions which will challenge all those involved in the procurement and delivery of public services and projects.”

To read the report in full, please click here.

BSA sets out sector priorities in Autumn Budget submission

The BSA has published its Autumn Budget submission to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, outlining the sector’s key priorities for the next year The  submission calls on the Government to avoid adding additional costs to business, provide further clarity on Brexit, and continue to address the long-term skills and productivity challenges of the economy through the Industrial Strategy, devolution and public service reform A copy of the response can be viewed here

Speech: Keith Brown, MSP, at BSA Inclusive Growth Scotland event

Keith Brown, MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, delivered the keynote speech at the BSA Inclusive Growth event in Edinburgh, held in conjunction with BSA  Associate Member DWF.  Full speech can be found here.

A briefing note summarising the event can be found here.

BSA SPRING BUDGET SUBMISSION 2017

The BSA offered its Spring Budget submission to the Chancellor ahead of its publication in March.  We urge the Government to focus its attention on three areas that will boost productivity and provide the economy with the foundations it needs to succeed in future. These are long-term capital investment in infrastructure, greater digital connectivity through an expansion of full fibre broadband, and investment in education. For the full BSA submission to the Spring Budget, please click here.

BSA RESPONSE TO DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT CONSULTATION

The BSA has published its submission to the government’s green paper consultation on disability, work and health. The BSA welcomes the government’s ambition to halve the disability employment gap and we have outlined what could be effective measures aimed at achieving this.

To read the full submission, please click here

BSA CONTRIBUTES TO CORPORATE GOVERNANCE CONSULTATION

The BSA has published its submission to the government’s green paper consultation on corporate governance reform. The BSA welcomes the government’s ambition to improve trust in business and we have outlined where we believe reform can take place while retaining the UK’s world-leading corporate governance structure.

To read the full submission click here.

FLEXIBILITY KEY FOR APPRENTICESHIP LEVY IN NORTHERN IRELAND

Responding to a consultation from the Northern Ireland government, the BSA called for employers to be able to use apprenticeship levy funding as flexibly as possible, and for a better flow of information between Westminster and devolved governments. To read the full BSA response, please click here.

BSA CALLS ON NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE COMMISSION TO CONDUCT IN-DEPTH SKILLS ANALYSIS

Both the Government’s National Infrastructure Plan for Skills and the recently published Farmer Review present a clear need to boost construction skills. To read the full BSA response, please click here.

BSA SUBMISSION TO INCLUSIVE GROWTH COMMISSION

The BSA makes recommendations to the Inclusive Growth Commission on how to ensure communities across the UK benefit from economic growth. The Commission is chaired by former BBC Economics Editor, Stephanie Flanders and seeks to devise new models for place-based growth, which include the widest range of people. For the full BSA submission, please click here.

FUTURE OF REGIONAL TRANSPORT

On Friday 2nd December the BSA, in partnership with DWF, held the latest in a series of events focused on regional transport. Speakers included Midlands Connect, Transport for Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire Combined Authority, IPPR North and BSA members Balfour Beatty.  For a detailed write-up of the event, please click here.

IN CONVERSATION: LATEST THOUGHTS ON THE BUSINESS SERVICES SECTOR

In a recent interview with Kevin Anderson of BSA Associate Member, New Street, BSA Chief Executive Mark Fox shared his latest views on the business services sector.  The interview covers the impact of Brexit and devolution and how the sector can stay relevant and responsive in such a period of great political uncertainty.

Mark comments: “We need to understand what people are thinking in the communities in which we’re all living and working. We are not just businesses, but people who live and work in these communities. We are quite canny in our sector because we are used to delivering services by just keeping an ear open as to what is going on and responding to it. Why? Because we are very flexible, very adaptable, very robust, and that is what the role of the BSA is; to walk along with the members, staying alert. How can we freshen up what we do? How can we stay in tune with what’s happening?”

The full interview can be found here

BSA RESPONDS TO SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT ON APPRENTICESHIPS

The focus of the funding must remain on increasing skills in the labour market to reflect those needed by employers. We therefore urge the Scottish Government to use this consultation to work closely with levy-paying organisations to provide information and surety on their plans and to identify areas in which consistency and cooperation across borders would produce better outcomes for apprentices and employers.

The full BSA response can be found here

BSA VIEWS ON FAIR DEAL IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT

The BSA has responded to the Department for Communities and Local Government consultation on proposed changes to the Local Government Pension Scheme Regulations. BSA members welcome the proposals to implement policies on Fair Deal which will create consistency across the public sector pension schemes and promote uniformity in approach by local authorities.

The full BSA response can be found here.

BSA RESPONDS TO THE NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE ASSESSMENT

We recommend the Government focuses on the following (click here for the full response):

• Skills – Building a diverse skills base

• Connectivity – So cities can act as economic hubs

• Devolution – Clarifying how combined authorities and local government fit into national planning

• Funding – Improving the flow of investment and building good business cases

• Technology – Innovations in construction, skills, and how people interact with infrastructure

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