Wednesday 11 March 2015

Sheffield City Council is set to bring council housing repairs and maintenance services, which are currently delivered by Kier, back in-house.

Proposals will be discussed at the council’s Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, 18 March when members are expected to approve proposals for the change when Kier ‘s contract ends in March 2017.

Councillor Harry Harpham, Cabinet Member for Homes and Neighbourhoods, said: “It’s really important to me that council housing tenants have a good quality repair and maintenance service which puts their needs first.

“We’re set to bring the service in-house when our current contract ends. This will mean we will have more opportunities for joint working, increased efficiency and – most importantly – better outcomes for customers.

“Our tenants and leaseholders have done a great job in helping us develop a vision for the future repairs service and it’s really important that we take direct responsibility for this.

“Bringing the service in-house will also help us increase employment opportunities for young people, through more work-experience placements and apprenticeships. We’ll also boost local business by using local suppliers wherever possible.”

Discussions with Kier are ongoing and there are plans to transfer Kier staff delivering the current contract into the council.

Kier operations director, Phil Oades, said: “As a strategic partner we have played a major role in Sheffield over the last 12 years by providing an excellent repairs service, and we look forward to carrying out a significant volume of work across the city beyond 2017 using our local workforce.

“We will continue to work closely with Sheffield City Council and its tenants to deliver an excellent repairs service during the remainder of the contract that meets the council’s future ambitions.”

The initial cost of bringing the service in-house will be funded from the Housing Revenue Account. Savings are expected over the long term as efficiencies are made.

Cllr Harpham added: “We have looked at all the risks and benefits associated with the different options for our repairs and maintenance service.

“We believe bringing the service in-house represents the best deal for our council housing tenants.”