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Translating meaningful metrics: Social Value


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The measurement of social value attributable to projects is an essential element for local authorities in assessing procurement routes. There is a transparent element within tender evaluation and award that offers the most socially responsible contractors to partner with local authorities to achieve true value, where every component of the project can be translated into a meaningful metric.

Measuring social value

Quantifying the full impact and added value that a project has on the local economy is being shaped into standardised approaches. One example is the National Themes, Outcomes and Measures (TOMs) developed by the Social Value Portal, which allows consistent reporting against five principle areas of activity identified through public sector surveys to be of highest importance:

  • Promoting local skills and employment
  • Supporting growth of responsible regional business
  • Healthier, safer and more resilient communities
  • Protecting and improving our environment
  • Promoting social innovation

As an early adopter of the National TOMs, SCAPE has been able to innovate within frameworks to provide continuous improvement in project and programme outcomes.

Social value must become a core element of best value, where the greatest benefit is achieved relative to cost.

Victoria Brambini, Managing Director of SCAPE Procure

Warrington Borough Council’s Birchwood Pinchpoint project is a fantastic example of the added value that frameworks can provide. Using the SCAPE National Civil Engineering and Infrastructure framework, Warrington Borough Council and our delivery partner Balfour Beatty have delivered a vital piece of local infrastructure - a £5m junction improvement which has already reduced congestion by 19% whilst making a significant contribution to the local community and economy.

By using our framework, the project has ensured £2.4m of local spend within 20 miles, with 86% of subcontractors being Small-Medium Enterprises (SMEs), generating £50,000 in social value.

Capturing social value within public sector procurement at the scale possible through frameworks should be the preferred option for local authorities seeking to evidence the long-term impact they have on their local economies amidst their own budgetary pressures.

Read the first blog in this series here.

Written by:

Victoria Brambini
Managing Director