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By | John Oates 4th February 2011 11:56

Boss leaves Buying Solutions, writing on the wall?

We're not buying anything so we don't need an expensive procurement quango

Alison Littley, chief executive of Buying Solutions, is leaving the quango which was meant to sort out central government IT procurement and other services.

A spokesman for the Cabinet Office said: "We can confirm that Alison Littley has announced her decision to move on from Buying Solutions, following five years as its Chief Executive.

"David Shields, Procurement Delivery Director for Buying Solutions, has taken on provisional day-to-day management of the organisation, reporting to John Collington, Director of Commodity Procurement within Cabinet Office’s Efficiency and Reform programme."

The future of Buying Solutions is in doubt - Francis Maude is in the midst of a wide-ranging review of government procurement.

But Buying Solutions faces a faster review - it has a month to prove its worth before ministers decide its fate in March.

The Cabinet Office spokesman sent us this:

The review will be carried out by John Collington, Director of Commodity Procurement within Cabinet Office’s Efficiency and Reform programme, and by David Shields, Procurement Delivery Director for Buying Solutions. The review will be undertaken in February, and its implications considered by Ministers in March.

Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, has stated that the Sir Philip Green review strongly reinforced the need to push forward quickly with the work that he had already begun on centralising category procurement.

This work remains at the heart of the Government agenda for procurement, and a transformed Buying Solutions will take its place at the centre of this work.  The review now commissioned will examine in more detail how this role will be fulfilled, and how Buying Solutions will operate as a key part of the Centralised Category Procurement programme led by John Collington.

Customers and suppliers will be informed of the outcome of the review in due course. In the meantime, Buying Solutions will continue to work closely with customers and suppliers and all existing operations remain unchanged.

Maude told Parliament earlier this week that while he did not know how much the coalition was spending on technology, he knew it had saved £1bn by cancelling or curtailing projects.

The Office of Government Commerce - famous for its logo - has already been Borged into the Cabinet Office. ®

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