Welcome to our new CEO: Keith Armstrong. We put him in the hot seat to give insight into his new and exciting business venture, Procurement Assist.
Having set up Procurement Assist in late 2019 we catch up with our new CEO Keith Armstrong as he launches this unique and exciting procurement service to the Public Sector.
Indeed, when it comes to public sector procurement Keith’s name is often one of the first out of the hat. Keith Armstrong has for more than 16 years helped the Public Sector deliver over £0.5bn worth of compliant procurement and has saved tens of millions of pounds having to date delivered over 200 contracts without a single legal challenge.
His objective is to revolutionise Public Sector procurement in the UK through Procurement Assist’s unique customer centric service model.
“Procurement Assist is a procurement support solution for the whole public sector to use” explains Keith. “The business is built on my 16 years of procurement expertise and business management experience. And with Stephen Booth, Director of Sales at the helm of delivering business development, our blend of skills will bring an industry leading procurement support service to a sector that has to date been used to expensive reactive inflexibility, rather than long term partnership working that delivers flexible value for money solutions.”
Keith has held many senior roles in the Public Sector, most recently managing a commercially operating procurement consortium for over a decade. Leaning on his experience, Keith has built a business based on a quick and simple to use OJEU compliant service delivered through more than 30 DPS categories of commonly used goods, works and services.
“We have introduced our suite of OJEU compliant Dynamic Purchasing Systems which are quick to access, simple to use and can be designed around the clients own specific requirements. This is in direct contrast to the common practice within the Public Sector whereby clients try to shoehorn its own tender specification into a Framework Agreement that was designed by or for another organisation.
Procurement Assist has a vast array of product categories which give our clients the facility to deliver their procurement requirements through our DPS’ using a service/price level that meets both their operational and budgetary requirements. Based on my own experience, this is what the clients want and is what ultimately what makes us different from our competitors”
Keith adds: “One of the key benefits to using Procurement Assist is value for money. We do not hide any fees by charging them to our suppliers. We are completely open and transparent – flat fees are charged, and they are based on the level of support the client requires. Our fees are not a percentage of the contract value so clients can benefit from significant cashable savings by simply switching to Procurement Assist. One of the pitfalls of a percentage of spend fee structure is that larger contracts will inevitably attract larger fees, rendering them very expensive to use, as the client picks up the bill through an uplift on the contract prices they pay to the supplier which in turn pays them over to the procurement service provider who often advertise the services as “free to use” to its clients – which obviously isn’t an open and transparent way of working.”
Away from procurement, Keith has also held other roles including Commercial Advisory Member for a South Manchester based Housing Association and a School Governor.
“I am looking forward to bringing our offer to the market at a time when cost savings in the Public Sector are more paramount than ever: The blend of saving clients money on the cost of their contracts, whilst offering a low cost, value for money customer focussed service is exactly what is needed, and it is what we are committed to delivering.”