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Consultancy Culture at DED

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In Tynwald (November 2011) MHK Kate Beecroft asked about external advisors used by the Department of Economic Development. In his answer Minister Shimmin differentiated between paid and unpaid bodies and revealed the cost. 

Which external trade associations, professional bodies, registered charities and consultants are actively engaged with the Department to advise on strategy and service delivery plans; and what the external advisers cost, broken down into (a) expenses and (b) labour charges?

Written Answer:

Since the establishment of the new Department in April 2010, it has been considered appropriate to increase the use of specialists to supplement the skills and knowledge of existing staff. As the Department is responsible for at least 19 separate sectors of the economy and given the manner in which the demand for specialist resources fluctuates, the use of limited-term contracts has greatly increased the expertise available to the Department. This strategy has borne fruit, for example, in the expansion of the e-gaming industry. As a consequence of this policy and other personnel changes, the Department has been able to reduce the number of Civil Service posts from 229.3 full time equivalent posts (FTEs) as at April 2010 to 219.5 FTEs as at September 2011.


The Department has utilised some of these staff savings to develop contracts and relationships with a range of individuals, companies and representative bodies to provide the support and services necessary to assist the Department in moving forward into new areas and developing a more commercial approach to marketing. These parties are utilised to supplement the valued skills and expertise of our civil servants.


These organisations and individuals may contribute to strategy and service delivery plans, directly or indirectly, through participation in forums and meetings or, alternatively, on the basis of a contractual relationship with the Department. Organisations and individuals that are contracted to deliver specific services, (for example, the provision of a business incubator) may have some effect on strategy and service delivery plans, even though that is not their main purpose. The final decisions as to strategy and the contents of the Service Delivery Plan are made by the Minister and Members of the Department.


The list below indicates those individuals and companies who provide services to the Department under paid contracts of varying lengths:


Paid Bodies

Uncommon Knowledge Limited

The Marketing Partnership Limited

Michael Charlton Consulting Limited

Garth Kimber

Institute of Space Commerce


Hedqvist Consulting Limited

Terry Toohey

Weber Shandwick

Redpoint PR Limited

Chamber of Commerce Partnership

Caroline Halls

Lansons (Note 1)

Maclir Consulting Limited

Wardell Armstrong Limited

David Holgate QC

Peter Brett Associates LLP

North West Aerospace Alliance

Cloud 9 Limited

Capital Select Limited

Construction Forum


The total amount paid to the above in the period 1st April 2011 to 9th November 2011 amounts to £712,104, the majority of which are paid under formal contracts with the Department.


The expenses paid to the above in the period 1st April 2011 to 9th November 2011 amounts to £215,398, which includes more than £125,000 directly related to marketing, paid on behalf of the Department.


In addition, the Department is enormously grateful to the many individuals and bodies who give their time freely to assist in developing the economy of the Island. The list below is not exhaustive, but reflects many of the organisations that help us to understand the issues facing their particular sectors and to find solutions which will help to maintain and create employment opportunities for our people. In these challenging times it will remain vital that we safeguard the excellent relationships between Government and the private sector.


Unpaid bodies supporting the Department

Chamber of Commerce numerous Committees

Council of Voluntary Organisations

Employers’ Federation

ICT Sector Skills Group (Hansard, PDMS, MT, Cable & Wireless, Domicilium, RBSI, Skanco)

Engineering Sector Skills Group (Swagelok, Ronaldsway Aircraft, GE, Manx Engineers, Strix, MEA)

Construction Sector Skills Group (Employers’ Federation, Stewart Clague Services, Ardern & Druggan, NK Construction)

Manx Aerospace Cluster

Manx Hospitality Partnership

Isle of Man Shipping Association

Yacht Forum

Fund Managers Association

Bankers’ Association

Isle of Man Captive Association

Manx Insurance Association

Association of Corporate Service Providers

Association of Pension Scheme Providers

Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners

Law Society

Institute of Financial Services

Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators

Securities and Investment Institute

Society of Chartered Accountants

Chartered Institute of Taxation

Association of Chartered Certified Accountants

Chartered Institution of Insurance and Financial Services


Note 1 – The Lansons’ contract is with Government and the fees are paid by the Chief Secretary’s Office; a proportion of these are recharged to the Department but to date no recharge has occurred.


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