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Outsourcing HR Strategy

Outsourcing has gathered strength over the past two decades and is now a widely accepted practice in public and private sectors worldwide. It often involves the transfer of staff to a specialist service provider: this is where Pinsent Masons' specialist outsourcing team can assist.

Key Contacts

Whether you are involved in any stage of a procurement process, be it outsourcing, re-procuring, bidding or in-sourcing, we have the expertise to help you formulate the most appropriate strategy and legal framework so that you are best placed to achieve your commercial objectives and manage your risks.  

Our specialists will work alongside your team and use their in depth experience of outsourcing transactions, the impact of TUPE, the importance of the pension issues and knowledge of the 'market' approach and will provide commercial strategies to achieve your desired HR outcome.  

We can advise you throughout the outsourcing process, from inputting into the design of the procurement strategy, through to ITN, BAFO, contract negotiation, transition, implementation and transformation.

In addition to advising on and supporting the implementation of the HR strategy of any outsourcing project, we will, depending on your individual requirements:

  • Ensure that your commercial, HR and legal teams are properly trained to identify and account for TUPE issues and deal with the transfer issues;
  • Work with your in-house team to put in place appropriate internal protocols to ensure that HR and TUPE issues are properly identified from the outset and factored in prior to heads of terms being agreed;
  • Ensure that appropriate TUPE protection is agreed through indemnities and warranties, including providing for issues on exit;
  • Work with your team to solve problems arising in relation to particular transfers; and
  • Assist you in implementing necessary pre and post organisational changes in the most cost-effective way bearing in mind your business requirements.

Recent experience includes:

  • Providing a public-service broadcaster with all HR input and strategy in relation to its IT programme.  The aim of this procurement programme is to move to a multi-sourced tower model for its enterprise technology to replace its single supplier arrangement. This included exit negotiations with the incumbent supplier and development of strategy for the forthcoming tender process and future TUPE processes
  • Advising a Local Authority on one of the largest IT procurement programmes and multi-sourced projects in the UK.  Due to the nature of the organisation and its size, there is significant financial, market and political pressure to ensure that the project is successful.  The HR element was significant, involving not only a major second generation outsourcing of more than 700 employees, but it also involved complex industrial relations and pensions issues
  • Advice to numerous NHS organisations regarding the application of TUPE to the outsourcing of various services, including hard and soft facilities management, IT support, transport services and clinical functions working closely with the HR, commercial and procurement teams from the project-planning stages, providing advice regarding the application of TUPE and the commercial implications of workforce arrangements, through to drafting and completion of the contractual documentation
  • Successfully defending a major provider of leisure activities in a tri-partite Tribunal claim involving outgoing and incoming supplier. We were acting for the client and the outgoing supplier was claiming that the client had brought part of the services in-house. Our client obtained a costs order against the outgoing supplier
  • Advising an international infrastructure company on the transfer of all employees working for one subsidiary company within the client group to another as part of a TUPE transfer immediately prior to the share sale.  The transfer affected approximately 2,000 UK employees and was complicated by pensions issues and the requirement to consult on “measures” proposed by the ultimate purchaser
  • Advising a global consulting service on the renewal of a services agreement with its customer, a major retail bank, which involved taking on a team from the bank; advising the client on risks associated with the transfer and the negotiating of a fund to be provided by the bank to meet post transfer costs; advising on managing integration of the team post transfer to achieve strategic objectives while minimising risk of claims

Read more about our Employment services.