Herefordshire Council has agreed to award a contract for the provision of equipment, installation and support services for a video conferencing solution in fourteen meeting rooms in Plough Lane at a total three year cost of £132,925.83.

Detailed requirements have been provided by Herefordshire Council staff to enable hybrid meetings where some of the attendees are in the meeting room and others are working at remote locations. An easy to use but high quality, reliable solution has been sought and demonstrations held by suppliers of their recommended solutions which they felt met the requirements.

The Council says that an initial pilot with detailed success criteria has been carried out in the three of the Plough Lane meetings rooms the Hereford, Leominster and Goodrich rooms. These three rooms provided opportunity to test the equipment fully ahead of this further procurement.

More than £96,000 is to be spent on new meeting room furniture for Herefordshire Council offices at Plough Lane in Hereford.

From Herefordshire Council:

The Council had consider retaining the existing furniture however it is felt that it is no longer fit for purpose in all the meeting rooms. The project will replace furniture in the larger rooms to enable these to become multipurpose spaces but will retain all good quality furniture and distribute this to the smaller rooms wherever it is needed.

In line with the contractual procedure rules a tender was issued to suppliers and responses were received on Monday 22 March 2021.

Following evaluation of the response from Portsdown Ltd it is agreed that this met all the requirements stated within the tender document for Lot 2 Meeting Room furniture.

The project was then paused due to changes in organisation structure and a review of the work was undertaken but is now moving forward, however, industry wide price increases has meant that the supplier is no longer able to honour the original prices. As prices have increased across the board a direct award to Portsdown using the YPO Framework ensures Herefordshire Council is getting best value and using a compliant procurement method.

This award is part of the project which is reviewing the way the Plough Lane building will be used and how staff will want to use the building in future. It will allow Herefordshire Council to respond to changing work practices and the use of office space post-Covid.

Decision made: Award of contract for meeting room furniture for Plough Lane to Portsdown Office Ltd using the YPO Framework Agreement Ref No 1074 at a total cost of £96,874.68.