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Social Value

The Council's main responsibility is ensuring good quality services. Social value goes beyond this to use the way that the Council buys or delivers those services to bring about extra benefit for the local society, economy and environment.

What does the Council mean by social value?

Social Value usually means creating something extra by the way that an organisation buys goods and services. The social value hub defines it as “The benefit to the community from a commissioning or procurement process over and above the direct purchasing of goods, services and outcomes.” This benefit could be apprenticeship opportunities created, large contractors using local supply chains, or trees and bio-diverse landscapes being created alongside building projects.

As a large employer the Council can also create social value through its workforce. This could be by offering apprenticeships, targeted opportunities for specific groups, promoting staff volunteering, or by sharing employee assistance programmes or training opportunities with local businesses.

Social value should not increase costs if done in the right way. Many businesses already work to have a positive impact on their local community. Social value is about encouraging and supporting businesses to do this against clearly understood goals in a way that gains the greatest benefit for the borough.

How does the Council measure social value?

The Council has adopted the National Themes, Outcomes and Measures framework for measuring social value. This framework sets out a menu of measures for specific areas of social value that suppliers can choose from to describe the social value they would deliver as part of a specific contract and that the Council can use to track and manage the social value it creates itself. The Council works with the Social Value Portal to evaluate bids and enable it to award contracts and monitor and manage social value contributions.

Why consider and deliver social value?

Because it is the right thing to do to help improve the lives of local people and communities, and it supports local priorities.

The Council directly employs over 3,000 people and spends £300m+ with suppliers each year

Harnessing that potential to deliver back to local communities through social, economic, or environmental support, will create huge benefit for the borough.