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Joint Bidding Pilot opens up access to public sector contracts

This press release was published under the 2011 - 2016 Welsh government

A joint bidding pilot, aimed at encouraging Welsh businesses and organisations to work collaboratively to bid for public sector contracts, has resulted in contracts being won by consortia in nearly two thirds of those awarded so far – contracts which would not have been secured independently.
Friday 20 November 2015

Eight of the twelve procurement exercises supported through the pilot have now reached their conclusions and have resulted in consortia securing contracts in five of these, with the majority being new consortia set up specifically to bid for these contracts.

The Joint Bidding Guide, developed with the Wales Council for Voluntary Action and the Wales Cooperative Centre, was launched in October 2013 to open up opportunities to access some of the £5.5bn the Welsh public sector spends on goods, works and services annually. The guide offers support and practical advice for buyers and suppliers to help make joint bidding work.  

Finance Minister said:  

“Improving collaboration in public procurement and widening access to public contracts is at the heart of our procurement policy in Wales and we launched our Joint Bidding Guide and pilots to achieve just this.  

“I am delighted that the Lessons Learned Report confirms that so many of these contracts have been won by consortia – contracts which would not have been secured if they had bid on their own.

“There has been really positive feedback to this pilot and it shows so much can be achieved when cultural barriers, such as working with a business that was previously a competitor, are overcome.  

“It confirms that there is huge potential for delivering good value, excellent service and economic development through collaborative approaches to procurement. We will now explore how we can build on this success and use our new regulatory powers in procurement to strengthen this approach.”

One of the first frameworks to be awarded was by Caerphilly Council to bring housing stock in line with its ongoing Welsh Housing Quality Standard programme.  Three small businesses came together to forma a new consortium, Allied Construction Consortium Ltd, specifically to bid for this framework contract which is likely to total around £21 million over five years. Together they were big enough to bid for the higher value lot – works packages over £750,000, and were successful.  The consortium has now started work on a £1.1 million project through the framework.

Steve Cooper, of Allied Construction Consortium Ltd said:

“We have all got our particular fortes. Bringing ourselves together makes us stronger. Together we form a more complete outfit. You have to be able to trust the people you are involved with. If you don’t have any prior knowledge of those people, it’s very difficult.”

Liz Lucas, Head of Procurement at Caerphilly Council said:

“We acknowledge that there are a lot of small companies within Caerphilly that ideally would like to bid for our work. Unfortunately, they are not quite big enough to always make it happen and so we embarked on this project to see if we could make our processes more accessible to the smaller businesses.

“There is a lot of knowledge that comes together through working as consortia. We were keen to use our local supply base - their knowledge, their innovation and local supply chains. All the different aspects of local procurement practice that we could bring to the project”

The Lessons Learned Report was launched at an event organised by Cardiff University Business School to showcase examples of effective collaboration in public sector procurement.



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Finance 20 November 2015 Budget Economy Mid Wales North Wales South East Wales South West Wales

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