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Investing in the future of public services

Social outcomes contracts help Government achieve better life outcomes for vulnerable people and better value for the public purse.

These contracts enable Government to commission vital services from expert social sector providers – and only pay for successful outcomes delivered. Bridges provides the working capital and project management support necessary to ensure the contract succeeds.

39

Social outcomes contracts supported to date

£24m

Committed to date across these projects

£130m

Projected value of outcomes to Government

Our thesis

The Government spends about £80bn a year commissioning vital social services from third-party providers. The vast majority of this is done on a ‘fee for service’ basis, where the provider is paid for a series of inputs.

With outcomes contracts, providers are paid for the results they achieve, not the services they deliver. This gives them more freedom to innovate and improve their service as they go along, while also providing a clear incentive to over-deliver.

At the same time, these contracts encourage closer collaboration and better alignment between commissioners, delivery organisations and funders, which reduces risk and improves contract management. And through their strong focus on data, they can also help to inform future policy.

We have supported nearly 40 of these projects in the UK, with a focus on children’s services, homelessness, youth employment, and health/social care. Collectively, these projects are on course to deliver about £130m of outcomes to Government.

Bridges Fund Management

“The areas of added value to date include the continual engagement of investors, beyond the initial investment; the added layer of support from the board, including the flexible use of funding to achieve defined outcomes; pragmatic decision-making; and a rigorous information and reporting system focused on outcomes.”