About the Author

Ken Cole
SPS Consultancy

Ken Cole has worked in senior positions in both the public and private sectors and was one of the founding Directors of SPS in 2001. He recently completed a three year secondment as Director of the London Centre of Excellence. Ken has thrilled many public and private audiences with his incisive analysis, robust delivery and his belief in 'telling it as it is'. His blog is a regular commentary of the improvement and efficiency agenda.

Make sure you pay a frequent visit to find out Ken's latest thoughts on the workings of government, the latest policy initiatives and much more...

Recent Blog Posts...

Hijacking Procurement
Ken Cole
Mar 25, 2013
Mr Pickles uses the 'P word'.
Ken Cole
Mar 07, 2013
Haringey Leads London
Ken Cole
Feb 14, 2013
Time to rethink Supplier Evaluation
Ken Cole
Aug 30, 2012
Smoke and Mirrors in Whitehall!
Ken Cole
Jul 12, 2012
Collaboration at its best
Ken Cole
May 25, 2012
Latest Procurement Card Scare
Ken Cole
Mar 21, 2012
iESE - a model for a Big Society?
Ken Cole
Mar 06, 2012
I wandered lonely as a Cloud
Ken Cole
Feb 03, 2012

Latest Procurement Card Scare

Mar 21, 2012

Last year we had the shock horror stories about alleged local government misuse of procurement cards – dubbed by the less informed media as credit cards. Now it is central government’s turn with the publication of a National Audit Office audit on spending.

Quite rightly, the NAO pick up on the need for firm controls and audit trails to be in place. As many readers know, they weren’t designed to be a perk, but a way of picking up low value / routine transactions. If implemented properly, they save both time and sometimes money too.

However, we do need to get a good story going. ‘Lavish spending still not under control’ announces the Daily Mail. Similarly, The Guardian comes in with ‘Civil Servants accused of credit card abuse’. Great story, now we need some suitable comments by a selection of ill informed politicians; there are plenty to choose from in all sides of the House. Even Government Ministers are prone to mixing up tax evasion and tax avoidance as if they are both crimes.

Conclusion – central government needs to tighten up its financial controls. No news there then. Procurement cards need more supervision. Agreed! Now please move on.

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