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June 8, 2012

Welsh NHS body goes with UK SMB for expense management

Deal is expected to save organisation £750,000 per year

By Steve Evans

The NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership (NWSSP) has signed a five year deal to revamp its expenses software in a deal that it hopes will save it £750,000 a year.

The deal has been signed with Lincolnshire-based firm Software Europe. It is a rare win for a UK-based SMB to grab an NHS contract like this. In the past the organisations has been criticised for sticking with a small number of big name suppliers at the expense of smaller companies that could perhaps provide better value for money.

Software Europe recently became one of only nine software companies recommended under the Cabinet Office’s Innovation Launch Pad for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to demonstrate public sector efficiency savings.

The contract will see Software Europe provide its Expenses Health software to NWSSP to help the organisation with its expenses management. The platform hooks up with the NHS’s Electronic Staff Record (ESR), which is an organisation-wide database covering human resources and payroll data.

It will cover nearly 200,000 NHS workers cross Wales, including primary, secondary, and ambulance services as well as Public Health Wales. It is hoped that by using this software, NWSSP can get rid of the need for paper-based expenses claims, saving the organisations time and money.

"This procurement provides an opportunity to implement an electronic expenses reimbursement system across NHS Wales," said Paul Thomas, assistant director, NHS Wales shared services, employment services.

"We expect the system to help us provide a quicker reimbursement of travel expenses incurred by NHS staff as well as delivering at least £750,000 cost savings per annum," he added.

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"The closer control and flexibility Expenses Health offers, alongside driving out time-consuming paper administration, can deliver savings of between 15% and 20%," said Neil Everatt, managing director of Software Europe.

"At present, Software Europe helps administer over 1.5 million NHS expense claims across the UK. To add NHS Wales is a big achievement for us and testament to the strength of Expenses Health as the leading expenses management system for health organisations," he said.

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