Publication - FOI/EIR release

Contractors daily rates, time in post, time remaining in post: FOI release

Published: 29 May 2019

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Published:
29 May 2019
Contractors daily rates, time in post, time remaining in post: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/19/00952
Date received: 1 Apr 2019
Date responded: 16 May 2019
Information requested

 

How many contractors are engaged on a day rate of more than £1000 excluding VAT, how long they have been with the directorate and how long they will be retained.
How many contractors are engaged on a day rate of between £800 and £1000 excluding VAT, how long they have been with the directorate and how long they will be retained.
How many contractors are engaged on a day rate of between £600 and £800 excluding VAT, how long they have been with the directorate and how long they will be retained.
How many contractors are engaged on a day rate of between £400 and £600 excluding VAT, how long they have been with the directorate and how long they will be retained.
How many contractors are engaged on a day rate of between £200 and £400 excluding VAT, how long they have been with the directorate and how long they will be retained.

What is the current monthly spend on contractors (across all supply methods) for the social security programme and IT division.

 

Response

 

The first part(s) of your request relates to the day rates of contractors, how long they have been with the Directorate and how long they will be retained. Providing those three pieces of information results in the creation of personal data i.e. it would be possible to identify an individual and their personal remuneration.

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) therefore applies to that element of the information you requested. As it is personal data of a third party, disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

An exemption under section 33(1)(b) of FOISA (commercial interests) also applies to that same element of the information requested. This exemption applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the commercial interests of the Scottish Government and also of contractors seeking contracts with the Scottish Government. If individual contractors knew the rates of other contractors that could lead to some of those contractors increasing their proposed day rates. Conversely, If individual contractors knew the rates of other contractors that could lead to some of those contractors undercutting their competitors to secure contracts.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open and transparent government, and to help account for the expenditure of public money. However, there is a greater public interest in protecting the commercial interests of the Scottish Government and the companies which tender for Scottish Government contracts, to ensure that there is fair competition between suppliers and we are always able to obtain the best value for public money.

 

The second part of your request was for currently monthly spend on contractors. The latest available full month figure is for February 2019. Social Security directorate spent £1.2m on contractor costs in February 2019. This represents costs charged via statement of works and directly as contingent labour. Contractor costs vary month to month due to being charged in arrears and dependent on the number of hours worked.

 

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

 

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG