Public Sector Procurement

Stephen Hateley
While the UK economy may be moving out of recession, budgets in the public sector are tight and likely to get tighter. Collaborative Procurement ensures that the sector can benefit from its significant scale, and a number of frameworks are now in place to maintain commercial leverage and greater choice and flexibility.

As the UK economy emerges from recession, the public sector may still be waiting for the full effects. Capital expenditure programmes are already coming under increased pressure and scrutiny. All public sector areas are expected to work together to make significant procurement savings.

As part of the Operational Efficiency Programme, published by the Office of Government Commerce (OGC), savings of £5.7 billion by 2011-12 and £7.7 billion by 2013-14 are required. Collaborative procurement is proposed as the springboard to make this happen.

Collaborative Procurement

Collaborative Procurement ensures that the public sector can benefit from its significant scale. The aim is to channel expenditure via aggregated, pan-government procurement strategies. By 2011 central government has a target to ensure that 80% of all procurement is channelled through Professional Buying Organisations (PBO) and other collaborative strategies; the wider public sector is set at 50%.

Faithful+Gould's research has found that £63,000 is the average cost for individual clients to run an EU compliant procurement process. Average time taken is 73 days. Pan-government framework agreements present a ‘quick win' opportunity for cost and time savings.

Buying Solutions framework agreement

Faithful+Gould is appointed on a range of public sector frameworks including Buying Solutions:

  • The largest PBO
  • The national procurement partner for UK public services
  • Delivers procurement solutions for nationally sourced commodity goods and services
  • Used by central civil government and the wider public sector
  • Has no formal ‘mandate' and therefore has to ‘earn' its customers

Buying Solutions has teamed up with Improvement and Efficiency South East (IESE) to provide a pan-government framework agreement. This will support public sector organisations in procuring construction consultancy services. The framework agreement offers:

  • Approved industry best practice
  • Increased commercial leverage
  • Greater choice and flexibility
  • Up to 12 industry supplier experts
  • Faster speed to market
  • Brings together project management, design and a number of ancillary technical services
  • Service package as a comprehensive ‘one-stop shop' consultancy solution or as a schedule of specialist elements
  • Services can be purchased in isolation or in any bespoke combination
  • Enables the procurement of construction consultancy services on any project of any value
  • Procurement via a ‘single source' appointment using pre-agreed fee rates or as a mini-competition with selected suppliers

Scape National Design team Framework

Faithful+Gould together with Atkins is also able to offer design and surveying services as the sole partner under the Scape National Design Team Framework:

  • Enables all public sector organisations to procure design and surveying services without the constraints of the usual OJEU procedures
  • Dramatically reduces procurement times and costs
    Enables earlier building occupation
  • Scape System Build is a local authority controlled company, comprising Derby City, Derbyshire County, Gateshead, Nottingham City, Nottinghamshire County and Warwickshire County Councils.

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