Procurement

As a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB) the SSSC helps contribute to the Scottish Government’s National Outcomes. One of the outcomes is to ensure public services are high quality, continually improving, efficient and responsive to local people’s needs and procurement has a significant role to play in achieving this outcome. 

Our 2016-2019 Procurement Strategy:

  • sets out our priorities and proposals for procurement over the planning period
  • identifies those factors that will influence the way in which we manage the procurement process 
  • describes the arrangements for monitoring and evaluating the strategy.

We have signed up to the Suppliers’ Charter which sets out a joint statement between public sector procurement and businesses to facilitate access to public sector procurement opportunities.

Public Contracts Scotland

Our contracts register for all competitively advertised contracts exceeding £50,000 is published on the Public Contracts Scotland portal. We publish high value tenders on the Public Contracts Scotland (PCS) advertising website.  We encourage businesses to register for free on this site. It will give you access to a large number of high and low value public authority contract opportunities across Scotland.  You can also view our profile

We do not maintain our own register of suppliers, or have approved suppliers but suggest suppliers register for free with the PCS website.  By doing this you will receive notification of contract opportunities specific to your area of expertise from an ever growing number of public bodies in Scotland, including the SSSC.

It covers lower value contract opportunities but also those above the Official Journal of European Union (OJEU) threshold which appear in the European Journal. 

Our conditions of contract

Conditions of contract for the purchase of goods 

Conditions of contract for supply of services 

Conditions of contract for the supply of consultancy services

Conditions of contract for supply of goods and related services 

Our procurement practices - values and promotion of tenders

As a public sector organisation our procurement activity is guided by legislation and best practice, with the route being determined by the potential total value of the contract.

  • Less than £50K – the principles of adequate competition apply.
  • Greater than £50K but below the OJEU thresholds - most commonly advertised on the Public Contracts Scotland portal.
  • OJEU threshold and above - advertised in both the OJEU and Public Contracts Scotland portal.

Supplier opportunities, guidance and support - useful websites

A national collaborative Framework Agreement for Supported Factories and Businesses has been established to provide products and services to the Scottish public sector. 

The Online Supplier Journey makes it easier for Scottish companies to bid for work in the public sector.

The website guides firms, large and small, through each step in the process – setting out what to expect from buyers and what is expected of them, simplifying guidance, making it easier to understand.  It is particularly useful for small businesses. 

The journey guides businesses through the process of applying for contracts, making the system more streamlined and easier to understand and has been developed with the help of Scottish companies who have already gone through the process. 

The Single Point of Enquiry is an independent, impartial and confidential service for suppliers to the public sector in Scotland.  The service offers advice on the procurement rules which must be followed by public bodied in Scotland and information on how contracts are advertised and awarded.

If you have concerns about a specific tender exercise, they can work with you and the buying organisation to try and resolve your concerns.  They do not have formal powers to investigate suppliers’ concerns or change decisions made by buying organisations.  Feedback from suppliers contributes to improvements in public procurement practices in Scotland.

The Supplier Development Programme (SDP)

Scotland’s free tender training service for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) has launched a new programme of tender training events.

This year will see changes in procurement with the introduction of the Reform Act and the SDP is on hand to help businesses understand the up and coming changes within public sector tendering.

The new programme has been designed to make sure that SMEs can easily progress through the various different course levels with free events in or near their business location, plus many of the courses can be accessed online via webinar, reducing the time burden on small businesses being out of the office.

The programme includes a wealth of new courses, including hot topics such as community benefits and sustainable procurement, as well as core issues such as finding contracts and completing pre-qualification questionnaires (PQQs). So whether you are starting out and wish to find out about how to work with the public sector or need to improve your tender skills, SDP will have a course for you. To find out more information, book a course and get tender ready visit SDP's website