Councils across the country face a £5.8 billion funding gap by 2020, and are regularly having to review the services they provide, so it’s now more crucial than ever to make savings where possible. Although this often includes making cuts to local services, or increasing council tax, a really great way to save money (and claim it back!) as a local authority is by focusing in on your utility use.
Your challenges in gaining visible realised savings
We know that your main challenges and objectives are:
- Efficient cost control for the council
- Managing budgets tightly
- Visible realised savings, clearly tracked and measured
- Managing spend creep and ensuring cost containment
Visible realised savings to help fund local services
With limited resources and funds, we recognise that local councils often aren’t in a position to take full control of their utility procurement, management, and payments. The number of bills for multiple sites within one local authority can be incredibly high, so we can have these redirected to our offices, significantly reducing the time you spend sorting through hundreds of invoices. Outsourcing tasks like bill validation and contract negotiation to us means that you have experts deal with the complex, time-consuming tasks, leaving you to focus on the services you provide to the community.
We’ll not only deliver visible realised savings by securing better contract rates with suppliers, but we can claim back refunds for historical bills that may have been issued to you in error. As part of our Efficient Cost Management services, we conduct a 47-point check validation system. It allows us to inspect each invoice closely for mistakes, meaning that we’ve saved our clients over £130 million to date. When it comes to local authorities, savings as significant as these benefit residents of the council, employees, and users of your community assets like libraries and parks. Have a look at our tenant billing services to find out how both owners and residents of council properties can benefit.
Tailoring our services for you with insightful utility reporting
Tackle the complex utility market
The energy market can be a confusing place, and a lot of suppliers complicate things further by using jargon and not being wholly transparent with rates and offers. Non-specialist buyers can often be taken advantage and overloaded with information, and this is something we can help you with. When we’re procuring fuel, timing is everything due to the volatility of electricity and gas markets. Our energy analysts translate the markets for you and procure energy at the top rates. Our specialist knowledge allows us to negotiate with suppliers on your behalf, and even combine multiple sites under one contract bundle – a particularly useful feature for local authorities. Different suppliers offer specialised services, targeted at different consumers. We’ll choose the right supplier for you and your community assets, and make sure you get the best service possible, with clear savings.
In a time when the central government is reducing local councils’ funding more than ever, transparent expenditure is becoming increasingly important. With our insightful utility reports detailing your energy usage and any due payments, you’ll demonstrate full accountability for money spent on utilities. Having all of this crucial information laid out so clearly also allows you to prove value for money and justify the budget allocated to utility expenditure. We’ll send the reports directly to you, and you’ll have 24/7 access to our online customer zone, which saves on valuable admin time and reduces any budget misunderstandings which may have occurred previously
We have recently partnered with The Planet Mark, a sustainability certification programme focusing on reducing companies’ carbon footprints around the UK. This is a move which allows us to award organisations with The Planet Mark certification ourselves, demonstrating their commitment to reducing CO2 emissions. As a local authority, getting involved with a programme that encourages sustainable energy usage is something which likely complements schemes you already have in place. Greener living is becoming a greater focus for lots of organisations and by committing to The Planet Mark, and using our sustainable monitoring and targeting services, alongside our insightful utility reporting, you’ll be taking crucial steps to protect the environment.