back to article Capita in line for tasty £139m deal across five councils

Outsourcing goliath Capita has been named first in line for a nine-year, £139m deal across five UK councils. The London-based professional services company has been named preferred bidder in a deal to provide the councils' revenues and benefits, customer services, human resources, IT, and procurement. If the contract goes …

  1. Zog_but_not_the_first Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Capita - private company?

    Or nationalised industry?

    Without public accountability, natch.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Capita - private company?

      Evil-corp sure has its fingers in a lot of quasi-governmental pies.

      1. Marketing Hack Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Capita - private company?

        Capita must be Dr. Evil's new gig, now that Starbucks has pretty much saturated their market!

  2. davenewman

    Watch devolution break this

    If and when central government comes to an agreement with Oxfordshire County Council to devolve central government funds and services, all council services within Oxfordshire will be centralised there, not with Hampshire. We expect to hear something about that in February.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Watch devolution break this

      If and when central government comes to an agreement with Oxfordshire County Council to devolve central government funds and services, all council services within Oxfordshire will be centralised there,

      You really believe that? The reported deal with Capita is for the lower tier South Oxfordshire DC, and unless all of Oxfordshire is going to become a unitary authority, what SO DC decide has nothing to do with OCC. Admittedly OCC has long wanted unitary status, the lower tier authorities see this as a power grab, and looking at the coverage in the press, there's fat chance of OCC succeeding.

      Even if it did, the OCC case for unitary status is predicated on huge cost savings of £30m+ per annum, so they'd be forced to outsource more. We all know that wouldn't deliver any savings, but this is local government we're talking about, so they'd sign any old contract and then look surprised when it doesn't work. A bit like Cornwall County Council did.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Phew !

    Relief as it's not my local council.

  4. alpine

    Anti-localism

    And all in the name of 'localism', as Big Brother strides further over our lives. Localism? The truth is the exact opposite, encouraged by weak councils who have been conned into believing renaming their main committee as 'the cabinet' gives them some importance, as well as more fees.

    It's very sad to see.

  5. getHandle

    Have capita ever over performed?

    Just curious - under performed seems to be the norm...

    1. fruitoftheloon
      Happy

      @grtHandle Re: Have capita ever over performed?

      GH,

      Well the london congestion charge thingamabobby achieved its' objectives, started on time and to the surprise of many (me included) did pretty good from a budgetary perspective.

      I am sure there are more, but human nature being what it is, negative (but true) headlines get more clicks...

      Ymmv.

      Regards,

      Jay

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @grtHandle Have capita ever over performed?

        Apart from the period when IBM ran it, you mean...

        1. fruitoftheloon

          @AC: Re: @grtHandle Have capita ever over performed?

          Dear AC,

          I understand that IBM effectively 'paid' TfL for the pleasure to run it when the initial contract period ended, i.e. Capita were no longer, err, running it...

          Cheers,

          Jay.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Shoot zem, shoot zem both

    A pox on all of Crapita's houses, and damn their eyes to boot.

  7. Commswonk Silver badge
    Devil

    The definition of insanity...

    ...is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result.

    Often attributed to Einstein (him again?) but the provenance is less than certain.

  8. M7S

    A concerning trend

    Is there a point at which a company like this can become "too big to fail" and we end up bailing them out at public cost? Should there be some sort of regulations regarding monopolies that apply here in the national (rather than strictly economic) interest?

    Whilst many of these government administrative services are devolved and so not apparently Whitehall's problem, one wonders if central HMG has a BCP so that if Capita were to implode in some way (in a manner similar to, say, 2e2) and effectively take down local government administration and revenue collection (more or less across much of the nation), there's something to prevent the UK ending up making a banana republic look like a model of efficiency.

    There might be parallels to be drawn with the failure of the East India Company which was eventually replaced by the India Civil Service, although its not that simple a comparison. Whilst many might wish to see local government and its financial model completely revamped, alas in a panicked rush is probably not the time to be devising plans.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tax

    Funny that people are quick to slate Capita, but with all the recent big companies funnelling their profits through offshore tax havens, people seem to forget that Capita pays all its taxes in the UK. I would rather see my council money go to a UK company than some foreign one owned by hidden shareholders.

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