MD of Herefordshire business services firm Hoople to stand down

THE head of the company set up to save Herefordshire Council £33m over 10 years is standing down.

 Hoople confirmed this morning (Fri) that MD Mike Dearing will leave in June.

Mr  Dearing has been in charge of Hoople - which provides financial, IT and back office services -  since its start in 2011 as a joint venture company with Herefordshire Council.

Hoople took on what had previously been known as the shared services partnership and its £10-year £33m savings target.

In January this year, Hoople took a cuts hit of its own with the council looking to save £1.2m on the services its partner provided.

Last year, Hoople went into talks with the council as to how it could audit areas of its operation for itself, rather than have those audits conducted for, and reported to, the council.

 The council's then audit and corporate governance committee was told that such changes would reflect the "distinct organisational status" of Hoople and could lead to the removal of certain audits from the council's audit plan.

More soon

 

Comments (6)

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10:03am Fri 28 Feb 14

probono says...

'such changes would reflect the "distinct organisational status" of Hoople and could lead to the removal of certain audits from the council's audit plan'.
When translated from this councilspeak, what exactly does this mean? Audit and audit trails should be clear unambiguous and easy for the pbulic, that is those of us who foot the bills, to understand.
Can the HT provide an answer from their extensive volume entitled How to Read Between the Lines of What is Really Going On ? I know there is a waiting list for the library copy......
'such changes would reflect the "distinct organisational status" of Hoople and could lead to the removal of certain audits from the council's audit plan'. When translated from this councilspeak, what exactly does this mean? Audit and audit trails should be clear unambiguous and easy for the pbulic, that is those of us who foot the bills, to understand. Can the HT provide an answer from their extensive volume entitled How to Read Between the Lines of What is Really Going On ? I know there is a waiting list for the library copy...... probono
  • Score: 7

10:26am Fri 28 Feb 14

bobby47 says...

Probono, Here's my shot at reading between the lines. The departing Head of Hoople has read the writing upon the wall and has chosen to jump ship.
He'll probably join another Council Authority that will already be employing another former Hereford Council Director.
As for the business itself, it's in disarray. Desperately trying to drum up business, they've advertised in the papers, they've tried to gain trade from other public service bodies including General Practioners and still they can no longer see the future as brightly as they once did.
The staff? Well, they all know that the business is going to be reviewed, there'll be reorganisation and many within are fearful that they'll lose their jobs. And all this has been done because the Council were seduced by the idea that it would be rather clever of them to help create private limited companies so that 'we' were unable to discover how, where, and when our money was spent.
And now, now the funding to Hoople has been reduced and now the bubble of wealth has been deflated, lots of good people who only ever wanted a job of work are now sitting on the edge worrying themselves about the future.
One day soon, the penny will drop. The Council will realise that they should provide our public services, they should cut out the middle man and ensure that only Council staff, directly employed by the Council, should be involved in providing our much cherished public services.
In short, its all a mess Probono and its going to get worse before it gets better. My view is, the Council should cut the cord, set Hoople adrift, rescue the Hoople staff and return them to Plough Lane and allow them to simply work without the complication of being involved in a company that was only ever a clever gimmick thought up by a bunch of incompetent bungling idiots who only ever saw pound signs.
Probono, Here's my shot at reading between the lines. The departing Head of Hoople has read the writing upon the wall and has chosen to jump ship. He'll probably join another Council Authority that will already be employing another former Hereford Council Director. As for the business itself, it's in disarray. Desperately trying to drum up business, they've advertised in the papers, they've tried to gain trade from other public service bodies including General Practioners and still they can no longer see the future as brightly as they once did. The staff? Well, they all know that the business is going to be reviewed, there'll be reorganisation and many within are fearful that they'll lose their jobs. And all this has been done because the Council were seduced by the idea that it would be rather clever of them to help create private limited companies so that 'we' were unable to discover how, where, and when our money was spent. And now, now the funding to Hoople has been reduced and now the bubble of wealth has been deflated, lots of good people who only ever wanted a job of work are now sitting on the edge worrying themselves about the future. One day soon, the penny will drop. The Council will realise that they should provide our public services, they should cut out the middle man and ensure that only Council staff, directly employed by the Council, should be involved in providing our much cherished public services. In short, its all a mess Probono and its going to get worse before it gets better. My view is, the Council should cut the cord, set Hoople adrift, rescue the Hoople staff and return them to Plough Lane and allow them to simply work without the complication of being involved in a company that was only ever a clever gimmick thought up by a bunch of incompetent bungling idiots who only ever saw pound signs. bobby47
  • Score: 16

10:57am Fri 28 Feb 14

probono says...

Ah, I see from the above erudite comment, Bobby47, that it is you that has not returned How to Read Between the Lines of What is Really Going On to the library !
There's no money in the HC cocoa tin to buy any more library books you know.
Ah, I see from the above erudite comment, Bobby47, that it is you that has not returned How to Read Between the Lines of What is Really Going On to the library ! There's no money in the HC cocoa tin to buy any more library books you know. probono
  • Score: 5

1:21pm Sat 1 Mar 14

dippyhippy says...

Excellent comment Bobby!
As an aside, this little venture began in 2011 - we are now 2014, 3 years into this "money saving" 10 year plan.
Where is the evidence of the savings?
By my reckoning, about three million quid!
I assume from this that the reason they are so keen to self audit, is because these "savings" are an awful lot less - if there are any at all....
Excellent comment Bobby! As an aside, this little venture began in 2011 - we are now 2014, 3 years into this "money saving" 10 year plan. Where is the evidence of the savings? By my reckoning, about three million quid! I assume from this that the reason they are so keen to self audit, is because these "savings" are an awful lot less - if there are any at all.... dippyhippy
  • Score: 6

2:16pm Sat 1 Mar 14

bobby47 says...

Oh they'll be sure to bloody 'deliver' these vast savings Dippy. There's no doubt in my unstable mind that they'll be working on the evidence now.
Some pen pushing jotter blotter will be busying themselves as we moan and groan now.
There'll be graphs, flow charts, some line that is flat in 2011 and suddenly surges upwards toward the heavens that then passes a little marker that screams out, 'hallelujah millions of savings. Lord be bloody praised'.
Millions and millions in savings, plus a thousand jobs and the promise that we've all been the beneficiaries of this saintly union between the Council and Hoople.
And whatsmore, just to make it look very authentic they'll be a fifty pounds and twenty bloody pence tagged onto the end of this fictitious figure created by imaginative and floured accounting that'll yell out, 'we bloody delivered on our promise' to which, we are supposed to reply, 'thank you all very bloody much. Best thing that's ever happened to us'
Oh they'll be sure to bloody 'deliver' these vast savings Dippy. There's no doubt in my unstable mind that they'll be working on the evidence now. Some pen pushing jotter blotter will be busying themselves as we moan and groan now. There'll be graphs, flow charts, some line that is flat in 2011 and suddenly surges upwards toward the heavens that then passes a little marker that screams out, 'hallelujah millions of savings. Lord be bloody praised'. Millions and millions in savings, plus a thousand jobs and the promise that we've all been the beneficiaries of this saintly union between the Council and Hoople. And whatsmore, just to make it look very authentic they'll be a fifty pounds and twenty bloody pence tagged onto the end of this fictitious figure created by imaginative and floured accounting that'll yell out, 'we bloody delivered on our promise' to which, we are supposed to reply, 'thank you all very bloody much. Best thing that's ever happened to us' bobby47
  • Score: 4

8:47am Sun 2 Mar 14

dippyhippy says...

I see I made a typing error earlier - should be 9.3 million! We are roughly a third of the way through the 10 year plan!!
Sounds even more painful with that figure!
You are , of course, correct Bobby - "proof and evidence" completely irrefutable in the face of no independent audit, will I am sure, soon be forthcoming.
I see I made a typing error earlier - should be 9.3 million! We are roughly a third of the way through the 10 year plan!! Sounds even more painful with that figure! You are , of course, correct Bobby - "proof and evidence" completely irrefutable in the face of no independent audit, will I am sure, soon be forthcoming. dippyhippy
  • Score: 4

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