Making an impact pound by pound

Nearly 60% of spending by Salford City Council is now going to local suppliers – and that’s up 3% on last year.

Three times as many council suppliers are now paying the real Living Wage boosting income for their employees and the council itself has taken on eight more young people as apprentices with another 55 people expected to start apprenticeships later this year.

It’s all part of City Mayor Paul Dennett’s ambition to create an ‘inclusive economy’ – one in which as much public spending as possible benefits local people.

Last year Salford City Council became one of the first councils in the country to publish a social impact report showing how its spending was keeping more money in Salford and creating jobs and training opportunities for local people.

It is also supporting a campaign by the Salford Social Value Alliance asking businesses, social enterprises, voluntary and community groups to help make the city ‘10% Better’ by pledging to make small improvements across 11 social, environmental and economic outcomes, in areas such as recycling more, increasing volunteering or supporting local enterprise.

Now the council has published its second report Social Impact: One Year On which shows that good progress towards its ambition:

Furthermore, the city council:

  • celebrated our fifth anniversary of becoming an accredited Foundation Living Wage employer – the only council in Greater Manchester to be accredited.
  • further embedding social value into all our procurement contracts … making sure suppliers provide training opportunities, work experience and jobs for local people and that they buy local as far as possible.
  • have continued to deliver our Carbon Management Plan, leading to a significant 6% reduction in electricity and gas usage across council buildings in 2017/18 – saving over 574 tonnes of carbon towards our ambitious target of a 40% reduction in CO2
  • Salford eco-friendly Car Club scheme is the only one in Greater Manchester for employees, continuing to go from strength to strength, seeing an impressive 21% increase in business miles in 2018 (offering an alternative to employees using their own vehicles for business travel) – as all miles travelled in the club are driven in low or no emission vehicles this has saved an estimated 1,232 tonnes of carbon.
  • has assisted 2,485 households in Salford to heat their homes and reduce their energy bills in 2017/18 – 5% above target.

City Mayor Paul Dennett said: “Salford is the fastest growing economy in Greater Manchester and I want to make sure this truly benefits local people. There are many things the council cannot influence when it comes to economic growth but where we can act we are doing and we are determined to make a difference.

“As we’ve heard from our own employees when we became the first council in Greater Manchester to pay the real Living Wage, doing that makes a genuine difference to people’s spending power and puts more money into our local economy … with 62% of our staff living in Salford that’s a further boost.”

“We’re embedding social value – the idea that every pound spent benefits Salford people or the environment, into all our procurement contracts. That means we’re making sure suppliers provide training opportunities, work experience and jobs for local people and that they buy local as far as possible.”

Mayor Dennett added: “If everyone contributes a little towards social value, then together we can make a huge impact for the benefit of Salford people.”