In line with government requirements and European Union public procurement regulations, every public sector organisation has to establish a set of purchasing, tendering and contracting regulations and procedures which apply to all its contracts. These regulations and procedures are mainly known as Contract Standing Orders or Contract Procedure Rules. The information below summarises the procedure a typical public sector organisation must follow for certain values of purchasing. This may vary depending upon the organisation.
At or below £15,000
For a procurement activity (internal or trading spend) involving an estimated value up to £15,000 the procurement procedure may use any reasonable means to select the supplier and the procedures and outcome must be recorded and held on file. No formal tendering process is required. However, always ensure best value by getting at least three written quotations. Check that suppliers and contractors hold the required levels of insurance.
£15,001 – £100,000
For a procurement activity involving an estimated value between £15,001 and £100,000 the procurement will be advertised and there will be a minimum of three written quotes from selected suppliers. In every instance there should be a written record of the process including copies of the specification, the quotations, the evaluation process and notification of award and rejection. This written record will be retained.
£100,001 – EU Threshold
For a procurement activity involving an estimated value above £100,001 but below EU Thresholds, the procurement activity will be advertised and awarded by either the Contracts department or Procurement Department. The entire process will be overseen and signed off by the Managing Director. In every instance there should be a written record of the process including copies of the specification, the tender submissions, evaluation proposal, the process used, award and rejection letters and the sign off documentation. This written record will be retained on an electronic central file held in the contract’s folder or on the e-procurement system. Any exceptions will be at the Managing Director’s discretion. A written record documenting the reasons for the exception authorised and signed by the Managing Director, will be retained on an electronic central file held in the Contracts Department
Over EU Threshold (currently) £172,514 for supplies and services, and £4,322,012 for works
Follow a full tendering procedure in line with European Union Public Procurement Regulations. Advertise the procedure in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) as well as in local press and relevant journals. Prescribed selection and evaluation criteria used.
*Total value is calculated on the total spend over the life of the contract. For example, a service bought in on a four-year contract at £40,000 a year has a total value of £160,000.