Re-procurement of the Bail Accommodation and Support Services contract

Ministry of Justice

It’s a challenge to secure bed spaces for those who may otherwise be in prison, as the Ministry of Justice and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service know only too well. In 2018, an eight-year contract was due to expire for 550 bed spaces for the Bail Accommodation and Support Services. There had been several contract extensions, but lack of visibility was causing costs and impacting on the prison population. It was a chance to re-procure the service to provide value for money and also add value to the rehabilitation journey. A payment model based on paying for beds “in service” was implemented, transferring risks associated with non-availability of bed spaces and incentivising the supplier to bring them back into service as quickly as possible. Due to resourcing issues, a fluid approach to defining roles and responsibilities was taken. A re-work of metrics was also undertaken. The contract was awarded to a social justice charity and early indications are that, while the metrics are challenging, they are driving the behaviours the authority is seeking.

Judges’ comments: "Excellent results and a great example of a complex sourcing event managed well within a cross-functional, collaborative team. Good to see small social enterprises able to compete with more established players. Love the “pay for beds in service” model."