Tag: Public procurement

December Round-up and Observations from 2020

5,129

3,438

1,691

Total UK & ROI
Tenders
Low-Value
Tenders
OJEU
Tenders

688

277

1,692

Frameworks
or DPS
Prior Information
Notices
OJEU
Award Notices
Tender notices published in the UK & ROI between 01.12.20 & 31.12.20

December 2020

5,129 notices published in the last month of the year is incredibly positive. With workplaces slowing down for seasonal time off work, the last few weeks of the year normally see significantly less notices getting published. Below we can see the December totals for the last 5 years, and it is clear that December 2020 broke this trend. 

What is interesting about these stats is the high number of low value notices. OJEU notices could have been a result of obligations created by EU funding, but a significant number of low value contracts is unexpected, and means we start 2021 with plenty of opportunities SMEs can bid for.

As of 15 January 2020 there are over 5,300 live tenders across the UK and ROI, a great start to 2021 and a clear sign of the significant effort being made by the public sector to recover from the impact of the pandemic.


Our Specialists’ Observations from 2020

Tenders Direct offers a unique service where all of the tenders on our site have been individually sourced and classified by our team of Specialists. This Peer Review Process allows us to provide you with full coverage of every single UK and ROI tender, as well as applicable high value notices from the OJEU.

With Brexit and Covid-19 causing much speculation around their impact on public procurement, we caught up Carol, our Head Classification Specialist, to gain some insight into any trends she may have observed in 2020.

The amount of tenders published by the OJEU and various other sites slowed down greatly for a couple of months due to COVID and the start of offices working from home which was very worrying for us.
Suddenly this pattern changed and the number of tenders published rapidly increased day by day and the numbers we are sending out to our customers is now greater than pre-Covid which is amazing.

Some observations worth mentioning are:
◆ Some tenders which were published pre-Covid have since been cancelled and republished again to allow the maximum time for everyone to prepare their bids.
◆ There have been a significant number of tenders published that are specifically Covid related e.g. masks, PPE, disinfectants, call centre services, testing services etc.
◆ There has been a significant increase in tenders for business consultants/economists to help companies through the crisis and assist them in the future.

So despite Covid and Brexit, the number of tenders being published continues to be high and the trend is certainly upwards, so hopefully 2021 will be a very positive year.

Carol Davidson, Head Classification Specialist

Find opportunities you can bid for

With so many opportunities for work available right now, you’ll want to know how many of them are relevant to you.

Market Overview

Our Market Overviews are free, and are incredibly useful for anyone considering bidding for public contracts.
We can supply you with the number of tender opportunities published for your industry, the search categories we recommend using, and links to all the contracts published in the last year.
This information can be used to better understand what the public sector is looking for, and help you plan how public contracts fit into your overall business strategy.
Request your free Market Overview by by clicking this link.


Tenders Direct is the UK’s most accurate tender alert service. We are the only service to guarantee that with us – you’ll never miss a tender.

For more information about we can help you find and win more work in the public sector, please visit www.tendersdirect.co.uk or call us on 0800 222 9009.

What is Find a Tender?

Since 1 January 2021, high value (above threshold) tenders in the UK have been published via the Government’s e-procurement portal, Find a Tender service(FTS). 
 
FTS is the public portal for all high value notices published in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The portal is used by public buyers to advertise contracts, and by suppliers to access these opportunities.


For further discussions around Find a Tender, and what tendering after Brexit will be like, register for our free webinar on 20 January 2021, 1:00-1:45pm.
In this session we will cover:

  • Procurement after Brexit, and the new Find a Tender Service
  • What it means for public sector organisations and private companies
  • What will happen with above threshold procurement (OJEU)
  • How to best prepare and gear up for a successful 2021

What are high value notices? 

High value notices make up around 34% of all contract opportunities in the UK, with lower value notices making the other 66%. The thresholds which determine if contracts are higher or lower value change biennially, and vary in value for goods, works and services. Details of current thresholds can be found here
 
Prior to 1 January 2021, high-value notices were published to the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU). With the conclusion of Brexit, high-value notices from the UK are no longer advertised on the OJEU. UK business can, however, still bid for applicable high value EU contracts. Further details on the changes introduced with Brexit can be found here. 


What is the best way to search for tenders?

Find a Tender is a portal just for high value UK notices, meaning you cannot use it to access lower value tenders, notices of any value from the ROI, or high value EU notices. For full coverage of high and low value notices across the UK and ROI, as well as applicable OJEU notices – you need Tenders Direct. 
 
Tenders Direct is the UK’s most accurate tender alert service. With our unique Peer Review Process and tailored business profiles, we can guarantee you regular, timely and relevant business opportunities. 


Tenders Direct is the UK’s most accurate tender alert service. We are the only service to guarantee that with us – you’ll never miss a tender.

For more information about we can help you find and win more work in the public sector, please visit www.tendersdirect.co.uk or call us on 0800 222 9009.

Case Study: Robinsons Facilities Services Ltd

In this post we catch up with Robinsons Facilities Services Ltd to find out why they chose to renew their subscription with Tenders Direct.

Tell us about your company

Robinsons Facilities Services Ltd is Yorkshire’s leading HVAC maintenance and repair provider providing 24-7-365 cover to commercial clients throughout Yorkshire and surrounding areas.

How important is public sector work to your business?

Public contracts currently account for around 10-20% of our total work, but we’d like to increase this.

What business challenges did you face before using Tenders Direct?

Before Tenders Direct, we would spend a lot of effort manually searching separate public portals, and having to fill out multiple profiles for tenders sites which may/may not have been relevant to us.

Why did you choose Tenders Direct?

From looking at a range of tender alert services, Tenders Direct was the most robust system for opportunities, and sensibly priced.

How would you describe your experience of using Tenders Direct?

Great! We just use the e-mail alerts, and rely on getting tenders sent direct to our mailbox. This has been incredibly handy, and saved us a lot of time and effort. The service has highlighted plenty of opportunities to tender for!


You can find out more about Robinsons Facilities Services Ltd using the following links
Website | Twitter | LinkedIn

What is a public tender?

Whenever the public sector has a need for goods, works, or services (which are over a certain contract value), they are required to publicly advertise this need, and encourage businesses to compete for the work.

This process is referred to as publishing an ‘Invitation to Tender’ or ‘ITT’, and the associated documents have become more commonly known as tenders.


Why are public tenders needed? 

As the public sector relies on public funding to make decisions, all procurement must be made respectfully, encourage free and open competition, achieve best value for money and ultimately benefit the public.   

These requirements prevent unethical procurement practices, while also allowing businesses, regardless of size, to enter the market. For more information about this, please read our article ‘6 reasons to do business with the Public Sector?’


What types of tender are there? 

 
Low and High Value Tenders

The value of a tender determines the rules in place for how the notice must be advertised.

High-Value Tenders, also known as Above Threshold Tenders, are those which have a value above the EU public procurement threshold, and must be advertised in the OJEU to encourage competition from other EU countries. From 1 January 2021, the rule will be changing and these notices will instead be posted to the new government portal ‘Find a Tender’. More information is still to be announced, but you can find out more in our article Brexit and Public Procurement. 

Low-Value Tenders, also known as Below Threshold Tenders, have a value which is below the EU threshold and are advertised within the UK. These contracts are much smaller than High-value tenders, making them a great starting point for businesses entering the market for the first time. The procedures for low-value notices are simpler, and bidding for these provides suppliers with valuable experience to help them go after high-value tenders in the future. For more information, read our article ‘Why we love low-value tenders’.  

For details on the current public procurement thresholds, please see ‘New Public Procurement thresholds 2020/2021’. 

Public Procurement Procedures

Open procedure 
Is the standard procedure and for public procurement within the UK. This type of procedure allows any business to respond to a tender, access associated documents and bid for the tender.  

Restricted Procedure 
Is a two-stage procedure which involves creating a shortlist of the most suitable suppliers, by having them first complete a selection questionnaire. Those shortlisted will receive an invitation to tender, and are allowed to bid for the contract. This type of procedure is generally used if a high volume of bidders is expected. 

Competitive Dialogue Procedure 
Is a multi-stage procedure which allows discussion with suppliers before issuing an invitation to tender. It is used where procurement needs are complex, and as with Restricted Procedures, bidders will first be shortlisted. After the selection stage, the requirements and solutions will be discussed with shortlisted suppliers. From these discussions, the requirements will be finalised and an invitation to tender will be issued. 
 
Competitive procedure with negotiation   
Is a multi-stage procedure which allows negotiation with suppliers after they have submitted their bids. This procedure includes a selection stage questionnaire, and the final negotiation stage is optional – as along as this has been stated within the tender. Much like the Competitive Dialogue Procedure, it is used where procurement needs are complex. 

Innovation partnership 
Is a unique procedure which is used when no goods, services or works exist to meet the procurement need. Selection stage questionnaires are used to identify the most suitable suppliers before invitations to tender are issued. The products produced as a result of this partnership may be purchased by the public body, but only if they meet the minimum requirements identified within the tender. 

Framework Agreement
Is an umbrella agreement that sets out the terms – particularly relating to price, quality and quantity – under which individual contracts (call-offs) can be awarded at any point during the lifespan of the framework. Frameworks are typically used when the buyer has identified a need for specific products or services but is unsure of the scope or time-frame. The agreements created give buyers access to a range of qualified suppliers, allowing them to avoid the need to continuously re-tender. Being an a framework does not guarantee work, as there may be multiple suppliers offering the same goods, works or services – in such instances, mini competitions or best value will determine who wins the work. Full details of these agreements can be found in ‘Framework Agreements: What you need to know’.

Dynamic Purchasing Systems (DPS)

Is similar to a framework, however new suppliers can join at any time, and is used for goods, works and services commonly available on the market. A DPS must be set-up using the restricted procedure, and the process is required to be entirely electronic. Unlike a framework, there is no limit on the number of suppliers that may join a DPS, and any supplier may join during the tender’s lifespan. DPS are used to streamline procurement for both buyers and suppliers, as suppliers only need to demonstrate suitability once, and buyers can award contracts quicker than other methods allow.


How do I find public tenders?

There are thousands of portals through which public bodies can publish their notices, and it would take a significant amount of time and effort to try and locate every opportunity relevant to your business.  

Thankfully, Tenders Direct eliminates your need to search for tenders by collating every UK and ROI notice in one place, and alerting you to the tenders you want to bid for. Our unique service ensures we are aware of every tender published, and allows us to guarantee that with Tenders Direct – you will never miss a public sector notice.   
   
Request a demo today and discover all the opportunities you could be bidding for.  

Public Sector Round Up 07.08.20

In the news this week planning reforms were introduced to support SME’s, the government announced a £20m fund to help businesses recover from the pandemic, and a £90m dynamic purchasing system designed to drive the government’s uptake of artificial-intelligence technologies was opened.

Our top OJEU notices for this week include programming software for the British Film Institute, media buying services for care provider Anchor Hanover, and a grounds maintenance contract for the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

Below you will also find a breakdown of the number of tenders published this week.


In the news this week

Housing Secretary launches a ‘once in a generation’ planning reforms

On 6 August, the Housing Secretary launched a set of ‘landmark reforms’ aiming to speed up and modernise the planning system and boost economic recovery, with a specific focus in supporting SME builders.

Government announces £20m funding to support small businesses across England

The government announced that it is launching a £20m funding package to help small businesses recover from the pandemic. The funding will mean that small and medium businesses will have access to grants of between £1k to £5k to help them technology, equipment and advice to help them bounce back from the effects of lockdown.

CCS opens £90m framework to drive government uptake of AI

The Crown Commercial Service opened bidding on a £90m two-year dynamic purchasing system (DPS) designed to drive government’s uptake of artificial-intelligence technologies.

The dynamic purchasing system – which, unlike a traditional static framework, can add new suppliers and services over the course of its lifespan – opened on 3 August. The deal is scheduled to run for 18 months, and conclude on 2 February 2022 – but this could be extended, CCS said.


Tenders published in the last 7 days

1,048

645

307

Total Public
Sector Tenders
Low-Value noticesOJEU notices
Tenders published between 31.07.20 & 06.08.20

Top OJEU contract award notices

Title: United Kingdom-London: Programming services of packaged software products
Short description: The BFI launched BFI Player, a UK video on demand service, in 2013. The service is strategically important in helping the BFI fulfil its remit in building audiences for classic, independent, archive and world cinema. BFI would like to optimise its team structure in order to be as efficient as possible and are therefore considering outsourcing the development of BFI Player to a team/organisation who can work as an integrated extension of the core in-house product team.
Published By: British Film Institute
Date Published: 4 August 2020
Framework/DPS: No
Value excluding VAT: £200,000
Number of tenders received: 15
Contractors: Graph Digital Limited
View full award notice with your Tenders Direct login HERE

Title: United Kingdom-Bradford: Advertising and marketing services
Short description: Media buying and advertising
Published By: Anchor Hanover
Date Published: 5 August 2020
Framework/DPS: No
Value excluding VAT: £2,400,000
Number of tenders received: 5
Contractors: Space and Time Media
View full award notice with your Tenders Direct login HERE

Title: United Kingdom-Kensington: Grounds maintenance services
Short description: To provide grounds maintenance services to the communal grounds and parks areas in the North of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
Published By: The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Date Published: 30 July 2020
Framework/DPS: No
Value excluding VAT: £3,408,025.40
Number of tenders received: 4
Contractors: Tree Wise Men
View full award notice with your Tenders Direct login HERE


Our New Business Team are here to help you identify the solutions that will have the biggest positive impact for you and your business.


You may be unsure of what you need from a tender alerts service, or you may know exactly what you need and want to make sure you can get it. No matter what your questions are, our New Business Team will use their expert knowledge to make recommendations and discuss how will meet your needs.

If you would like to chat to a member of our team to find out how we can help you, please call us on 0800 222 9009.


In the meantime, have a look at our range of solutions on our website and discover how we can ensure you never miss a tender again.


Tenders Direct is the UK’s most accurate tender alert service. We are the only service to guarantee that with us – you’ll never miss a tender.
Visit www.tendersdirect.co.uk to find out more.

A round up of 2019

Another year has passed and we’ve had a busy year at Tenders Direct! We’ve reviewed approximately 68,000 notices and have categorised and published over 40,000 and trained over 150 delegates on our public sector bid writing courses.

Alongside these, we value the feedback we get from our customers, and use this to make continuous improvements to the services that we provide. Key highlights this year have been: 

Opportunity Manager – We’ve upgraded our bid management tool to make planning, preparing and coordinating your day-to-day bidding activity simple from a single pipeline view. You can allocate tasks, set reminders and attach notes for all your bids and create an audit trail of every action.

Competitor Tracking Alerts – A new feature developed to allow you to track the successes of your rivals providing market intelligence on their bid strategy and capabilities, so that you can inform your own public sector strategy. These alerts notify you when any organisation you choose to track are announced as winners of above threshold public contracts.

CPD accreditation – We’re proud to announce that our courses are now CPD accredited. If you’re a member of a professional body, completing one of our one day public sector tendering courses in London, Manchester or Birmingham will count towards your CPD training hours.

Opportunities

Looking back over the last year we’ve seen several articles pointing towards the positivity in the public sector, but one that really stood out to us was a report the Education Technology framework in which it was highlighted that 78% of the 40 suppliers are SMEs. We’ve seen new opportunities in all sectors, from ICT frameworks for education to Green City deals and places on frameworks for niche products that aren’t catered for in traditional commercial agreements. There are opportunities in the public sector for businesses in all industries and sizes and we’ll continue to help you find these quickly and easily.

Brexit

Brexit has, of course, been at the forefront for much of 2019. For the most part the legal framework for public procurement and the different procedures available to contracting authorities will remain the same. Should we result in a no-deal Brexit, one key difference for contracting authorities will be the need to send notices to a new UK e-notification service instead of the current EU Publications Office. Head to Gov.uk for more information, and to keep up to date with information in a no-deal Brexit scenario.

Looking ahead

Looking ahead, whilst there is much uncertainty about what will happen with a confirmed Brexit delay until 31st January 2020, for now, we still remain part of the EU and therefore the new thresholds published by the European Commission will still apply. Read the new thresholds for 2020/2021 here.

As always, if you’ve got any questions related to finding and winning business in the public sector get in touch via our website, or call 0800 222 9009.

Framework Agreements: What You Need to Know

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What are framework agreements?

Frameworks are “umbrella agreements” that sets out the terms – particularly relating to price, quality and quantity – under which individual contracts (call-offs) can be awarded throughout the period of the agreement (normally a maximum of 4 years). They are typically used when the buyer(s) identify a need for specific products or services but are unsure of the scope or time-frame.

Continue reading “Framework Agreements: What You Need to Know”

A Closer Look: The Fix

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In our last blog we outlined the challenge faced by suppliers when attempting to find suitable public sector contracts. Missing out on just one opportunity – particularly a framework agreement which can encompass many invitations to tender – is a nightmare scenario for any company. In this post we focus on how Tenders Direct prevents lucrative public work from passing our customers by.

Continue reading “A Closer Look: The Fix”

A Closer Look: The Challenge

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All businesses exist to overcome some sort of challenge on behalf of their clients. At Tenders Direct, we specialise in helping suppliers find – and win – public sector contracts. But aren’t public contract notices in the public domain? Surely this information is easy to find? Well, much like a needle in a haystack, relevant tenders for your business are out there but locating them is another matter.

Continue reading “A Closer Look: The Challenge”

Case Study: Bridgeway Consulting Ltd

Queen_s Award

Bridgeway receives The Queen‘s Award for Enterprise: Sustainable Development – 2017

In this case study we speak to Business Development Specialist Tom Foster to find out more about Bridgeway Consulting Ltd and their experience of using Tenders Direct.

Continue reading “Case Study: Bridgeway Consulting Ltd”

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