Verified case study

COPPAR increases organisational efficiency

by Sarah Rollason | 23 November 2016

COPPAR increases organisational efficiency


The Hertfordshire Integrated Commissioning Service (latterly part of Central Eastern Commissioning Support Unit) needed to get ready to serve the four Clinical Commissioning Groups in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire (and later six more CCGs in Essex) as part of the Government’s reforms of the NHS. 

Prederi supported the CSU in this process, using our costing method: COPPAR© to properly cost the outputs, activities, processes and resources required to deliver their services to their customers. 

The information provided to customers was of unparalleled detail and explained how the costs were broken down. It enabled the CSU to identify and reduce areas were the activities added little value to their customer.

Project approach

The Central Eastern Commissioning Support Unit (CSU) serves a patient population of 3.3million, employs 800 staff and costs about £50million. 

Before the project the CSU did not have a clear view of what the real costs of the outputs were, nor of the drivers of those costs and within the space of a few months, the CSU needed to price a Service Level Agreement ( SLA) and sign this off with each of the GP-led Clinical Commissioning Groups. The aim of the project was therefore to cost the outputs to each of the GP Commissioning Groups, in a fair and transparent way.

We used our extensive experience in activity based costing, based on our established methodology: COPPAR. COPPAR is based on the starting point of the customer and the output. The principle of COPPAR is that the only activities that should be undertaken are those that deliver outputs that the customer need. The resources then required to undertake those activities can then be calculated. This approach builds in challenge and promotes efficiency from the outset.


To create a solution that had total buy-in from all parties, we used COPPAR to build a customer focused, stakeholder supported output and activity model which showed an understanding of the actual costs and activities of all employees and how these linked through to the outputs and onto the Department of Health outcomes. 

This not only delivered the primary purpose – to be able to cost the SLAs – but the output costing project is also helping with;

  • Calculating price changes to the SLAs
  • Costing new services
  • Allowing the CSU to compete for new work and win
  • Provided management insights to help the CSU to prepare for operation in more commercial and competitive environment in the future
  • Provided the basis for identifying areas for cost savings in line with NHS efficiency targets


Sarah Rollason

Sarah is a Project Manager and Researcher with 7 years professional experience. She has worked across multiple sectors, including education, training, health and regulation.



Success factors

High growth


Project lead

Stewart Johns

Project status


Project value