For SMEs new to contracts of this size, having a defined structure has proved to be a huge help in keeping projects on track and ensuring the highest standard of service delivery.

Numerous SMEs have used their experience of a big public contract to take their business to the next level. The credibility of working with a large organisation combined with their knowledge of the tender process has enabled them to win contracts that they would not have even considered bidding on before.

Aside from bringing SMEs into the supply chain, the advantages of the Integrator include cost savings, increased compliance and reduced risk. But perhaps the most important aspect is the independence and impartiality it provides.

The reason that the Integrator is trusted as an FM model is because it sits separately from the client and the suppliers. This allows it to report and make recommendations fairly and to the benefit of all parties.

We’ve seen some high-profile cases where the model provider is also supplying some of the services. This is controversial because that provider is reporting on its own services which immediately raises questions about impartiality. There is also a conflict of interest because the model provider is competing for contracts with the very same SMEs it is meant to be supporting. It is simply not possible to have a fair and transparent process with this set up.

the ability to bring innovative products to market faster and are experts in their particular area. It also demonstrates a clear commitment to social value.

The Metropolitan Police (MPS) FM Integrator model was developed with SMEs in mind. This proved to be a fantastic method because the model could be improved and adapted in real-time thanks to feedback from the MPS and SMEs in their supply chain. The MPS second-generation FM Integrator model has a number of features that support SMEs from the very outset right through to the completion on a contract.

Bidding for a government contract can be a daunting prospect, even more so when it’s the first time a business is experiencing the process. The Integrator guides SMEs through the process by preparing all tender documents, providing evaluations and recommendations to the client for the pre-tender questionnaire, and managing the invitation to tender.

Contracts are forged directly between the client and service provider so the two are able to move beyond a working relationship and build a strong partnership. The Integrator continues to provide support by running a helpdesk centre and creating a governance structure with monthly meetings. TOMORROW’S FM | 11

As long as the model provider does remain independent then the Integrator has a vital role to play in the future of FM service delivery, regardless of trends towards insourcing or outsourcing. There have been plenty of successful applications of the model since its introduction with the MPS that have resulted in companies making significant savings, bringing more SMEs into the supply chain and having more control over FM as a whole.

Still in its relative infancy and with the private sector keen to try out the model, the future looks bright for the Integrator.

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