Companies helped by Social Value Act

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​A business and community support organisation says local companies are​ missing the benefits of the 2012 Social Value Act, which could win them new contracts and grow the local economy.

Community & Business Partners, a non-profit making organisation which supports​ businesses across Lancashire, wants more companies to demonstrate how the procurement of their services would improve the economic, social and​ environmental well-being of their local area.

The Social Value Act introduced last year ensures that local authorities must consider the wider value of their procurement decisions before entering into a​​ contract for the provision of services or the purchase or hire of equipment.

Companies with a strong track record for supporting the local economy can now put themselves in a much stronger position to secure public sector contracts in their locality.

Jane Houghton-Fenning, business development director at Community & Business Partners, said: “Few people realise the value of the social economy and how corporate social responsibility really can influence the success of local business.

“Small and medium sized enterprises can steal a march on bigger competitors by giving some of their time and expertise for the benefit of their local borough and theNorth West region.

“They can come and talk to us about how the Social Value Act can help them when applying to win new business, and also explore options for contributing positively to the local community where they trade.”

There are many ways companies can go the extra mile to lend their support, by getting involved in business and community support initiatives like those run by the Council of Voluntary Service in Lancashire, or by donating equipment and funds.

Telephone systems installer Abbey Telecom is backing the new legislation.

Managing director Tony Raynor explained: “In the twenty years we’ve been in business, we’ve naturally developed an ethos for supporting the local economy.

“And of course it makes sense if we can serve most clients on our doorstep.”