Lloyds TSB has taken a significant and innovative step in improving HR for
its 80,000 employees, by setting up a new team focused entirely on maximising
the value they receive from HR suppliers.
The two-person HR supplier development function team is responsible for
ensuring that HR supplier activity is aligned to the bank’s internal HR
strategy, and that relationships between them and the business are managed
The function is run by Iain Brumpton, senior manager and HR specialist, with
a background in relationship and supply management, and Paul Bennett, a manager
and qualified lawyer, who provides contractual support.
They work in Bristol and report to Tony Garnett, Lloyds TSB’s head of HR
The supplier development department co-ordinates a virtual team of
operational relationship managers and support functions (such as purchasing and
legal), which meets on a quarterly basis to share their knowledge.
For the first time, Lloyds TSB has also shared its strategy and thinking
with key suppliers by organising an HR supplier strategy forum.
While the Supplier Development function is not targeted at delivering
savings, it has managed to rationalise its supplier portfolio, and where
appropriate, ensure new supplier activity is co-ordinated across key aligned
A toolkit has also been produced for operational relationship managers
across seven internal HR teams to help them track specific issues, deal with
risk management and develop contracts.
Lloyds TSB is also creating an online database of existing and potential
supplier information, and is further developing balance scorecards to support
the management of internal relationship managers and external suppliers.
Tony Garnett described the initiative as a major breakthrough for the
business. "An effective HR strategy is one which is aligned to business
strategy. This requires alignment not only internally but also externally with
our suppliers," he said.
"In achieving this alignment, we must ensure value and quality are
effectively balanced with the bottom line."
Suppliers appreciate the effort too. Paul Glynn, account director at
KnowledgePool, said: "It’s unique to us and represents the only true
client partnership we have. This means we can approach the team with both
positive and negative issues without fear of losing business on the contracts