We’ve finally heard back from Kim Frost, UoL HR Director, regarding the future of the University’s hard and soft services contract. The current arrangement, with Cofely GDF-Suez, is due to expire in November – and while last year Cofely were talking boldly of a new 10-year deal, things seem to have cooled somewhat since then.
Cofely Section Director Enda Nally has recently been pleading with the IWGB not to copy in senior University of London management to instances of their contractors’ incompetence, and this desperation may be explained by Mr Frost’s email to us earlier this week, which states:
‘I am now able to tell you that the strategic review and planning for the future provision of Facilities Management services to the University is expected to be completed in September and we will then begin procurement of the new services. This means that the existing Cofely contract will need to be extended for a few months in the interim while that process is underway’.
Not exactly a ringing endorsement!
The options are various – to stick with Cofely, to bring in another company, or to split the services between different companies (essentially a return to the pre-2010 arrangement).
The most sensible solution, of course, would be to end the double-level of management, lack of accountability and two-tier workforce and bring our Cofely colleagues in-house. The IWGB will be calling for this option to be fully costed and presented to the Board of Trustees in order that they can make a choice based on the best interests of the whole University, rather than on narrow ideological grounds.
Whatever happens, all current staff will be protected and transfer under TUPE legislation BUT please do get in touch with any concerns – firstname.lastname@example.org.