Parliamentary Committees and Public Enquiries
Outsourcing and treatment of contracted staff – Ministry of Defence ‘must do better’, says Defence Committee
The Ministry of Defence’s outsourcing practice of ancillary services, such as firefighting and vehicle maintenance, is ‘not exemplary’ and the MoD pays little consideration to providing services in-house, says the cross-party Defence Committee in a report published yesteday
The report states that “contractors drop standards and squeeze employees to raise their profit margin” but warns that the MoD is not always willing to step in and enforce expected standards.
With reference to the performance of contractors including Capita, the report says it is “absurd” the MoD is not allowed to look at contractor’s previous performance in deciding on contract awards. The report recommends the Government remedy this situation before the end of the current Parliament.
The Committee’s report focusses on the Defence Fire and Rescue Service (DFRS) as a case study to examine the wider implications and lessons of MoD outsourcing. The report raises concerns over Capita’s involvement in DFRS, their wider record, and questions the approach to manning levels. The report calls on the Ministry of Defence to review Capita’s performance and consider measures to ensure the DRFS is carried out more satisfactorily.
Rt Hon Mark Francois, Member of the Defence Committee, said: “The performance of certain sub-contractors is well-known both within industry and the defence community. Given the MoD’s determination to press ahead with outsourcing ancillary services, it is an absurd state of affairs that it is not possible to take into account a bidder’s past performance. Ministers should use the Procurement Bill announced in the Queen's speech to change the rules for awarding new contracts”.
The report examines the treatment of outsourced staff, including in their terms and conditions of employment. The report expresses regret that sub-contracted staff often feel excluded from the wider defence family even though their roles are integral to the service.
The Committee’s report recommends the Ministry of Defence act to ensure that contracted staff receive comparable employment contracts to staff directly employed by the MoD. The MoD should also ensure that this is a standard part of the process when considering bids for contracts.
- Read the full report (HTML)
- Read the full report (PDF)
- Read the report summary
- Find all publications related to this inquiry, including oral and written evidence
Latest News from
Parliamentary Committees and Public Enquiries
International Trade Committee statement on Secretary of State session cancellation01/07/2022 15:33:00
International Trade Committee statement given yesterday on Secretary of State session cancellation.
Lords Committee requests urgent review of the Life in the UK Test01/07/2022 13:33:00
The Justice and Home Affairs Committee yesterday published a letter to Home Office Minister, Kevin Foster MP, stressing the need for the Government to begin immediately a review of the Life in the UK Test.
Committee calls on Government to delay ratification of Australia deal30/06/2022 11:25:00
The International Trade Committee calls on the Government to delay the ratification of the UK’s trade deal with Australia to enable additional scrutiny of the agreement.
Culture change needed at the Ministry of Defence to ensure SMEs in Scotland receive a fair share of defence contracts24/06/2022 15:33:00
The Scottish Affairs Committee today, on the eve of Armed Forces Day, argues that small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Scotland are being overlooked by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and its prime contractors when they select companies to fulfil defence contracts.
UK-Australia free trade agreement welcomed, but a published trade policy is needed23/06/2022 12:10:00
As the first trade deal negotiated from scratch following the UK’s departure from the EU, the UK-Australia free trade agreement (FTA) provides an insight into the UK Government’s vision for trade after Brexit. It is regrettable that it cannot be placed in the context of a published trade policy and understood in relation to other policy priorities, for example on climate, according to the House of Lords International Agreements Committee.
Government reluctant to engage with the EU on financial services says Lords Committee23/06/2022 11:10:00
The European Affairs Committee has today published a report on the UK-EU relationship in financial services.
Committee welcomes ‘positive’ government tree planting plans20/06/2022 14:25:00
The Environment Food and Rural Affairs Committee has welcomed the government’s response to its report, Tree planting, which was published in March.
All migrant victims of domestic abuse and violence must be protected, says Lords committee17/06/2022 16:15:00
The International Agreements Committee has today called on the Government to review and lift, as soon as possible, a reservation it is proposing to enter to an important protection for migrant victims of domestic abuse in an international Convention.
Procedure and Privileges Committee publishes Second Report16/06/2022 15:33:00
The Committee has updated the text of the Companion to reflect changes agreed by the House since the last edition was published in 2017. It has also adopted changes to clarify drafting and added explanations of well-established and important concepts hitherto missing from the Companion.