The ESMCP programme announced on September 19th their commercial operating model with the dual approach of selecting a Network Services supplier and a Delivery Partner. With the cancellation of the programme's planned conference calls this week PFC provides insight into one of the key questions suppliers must be asking themselves - What is the scope and role of the "Delivery Partner"?
The client documentation indicates that the "delivery partner" will have a key role from transition through to business as usual (BAU) with an emphasis on programme, service, supplier interface and contract management. There is no further information on accountabilities, allocation and management of risk and how much if any the Delivery Partner is involved in the actual design and delivery of core services.
So is the role of the delivery partner there to provide scale and expertise into programme, change and service management?
Looking around for similar delivery partner government case studies the recent and most celebrated one was with the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and its Delivery Partner, CLM, on the London 2012 construction programme.The ODA defined its Delivery Partner as a partner organisation with a client for project and programme delivery. The ODA went on further to define the Delivery Partner's role as "not typically part of the design and construction supply chain, but a partner to the client."
The ODA suggests the role of the Delivery Partner is to provide specific skills and resource to a client organisation where the client lacks the:
- capability: skills, tools, process, systems and procedures;
- experience: previous experience of projects of a similar type or scale;
- resource: level of resource available; and/or
- desire to undertake the project in house.
Furthermore, the benefits of working with a Delivery Partner provides:
- a single point of accountability;
- early and rapid mobilisation;
- wider expertise;
- wider access to resources;
- the ability to operate as a thin client
Reviewing the check list above one cannot help but feel the ESMCP team could leverage a lot within the ODA's definition of a Delivery Partner. It is also PFC's understanding that the ESMCP are familiar with the ODA case study and have analysed and reviewed the merits of this approach and its practical application to their own programme.