In 2021/22 MaPS undertook a major commissioning exercise for debt advice. Following this exercise MaPS committed to carrying out a public consultation to help shape our future strategic approach to debt advice and help us understand the best ways to commission national and locally based services over the longer-term.
We set out an intention to undertake a three-stage approach:
- a phase of evidence gathering, analysis and planning
- a consultation – where we formally invite people to respond on our proposals
- a process of engagement with the market leading into subsequent commercial activity
Though the initial focus following the consultation will be on the provision of community-based services, we don’t believe it is possible to consider and consult on these services alone. This is because the decisions MaPS must make about how to invest the budget we receive for debt advice cannot be considered in isolation.
Similarly, the role MaPS plays as a commissioner cannot be considered without also looking at the other roles MaPS could take within the debt sector – to be an effective commissioner for now and for the future we need to understand the challenges facing debt advice providers and the clients they are supporting.