The Procurement Process: Where to start?

The Procurement Process: Where to start?

A well-planned procurement process can help you achieve best value for money from your contracted services. We have produced a step by step checklist to help you put a plan in place to run your procurements efficiently and compliantly.

Step 1 – Build your contracts register; get to know your school’s contracted needs and put together a list of all your services, including the start and end dates and the costs. Build in an extra column to identify when you need to begin the tender process. We would recommend a 6-9 month process. The following steps will help when re-tendering all your contracted services.

Get in touch today to request your contracts register template

Step 2 – Plan your procurement process; start pulling your current contract data together and think about what you want from your new contract. Determine your budgets and think about where you can potentially make savings for your school – we can help identify if you are currently spending too much on your contract. Think about what type of procurement process you want to use and the benefits of collective buying with other schools in your area.

Step 3 – Write your specification – or get us to do it for you; this needs to explain your exact services requirement, including the quality and quantity needed, the output specification and when you want the service to start.

Step 4 – Choose your procurement route; we can advise you on the most appropriate route to suit your needs:

  • Frameworks: many frameworks allow you to directly choose the supplier offering the best value service. The DfE offers a free ‘Find a framework’ tool to simplify the process for you.
  • Mini-Competition between suppliers on a framework: this is where pre-approved suppliers can submit a bid for your requirements.
  • Run your own procurement for lower-value tenders: if you think using a framework won’t meet your procurement requirements you may wish to research the market for a range of quotes from suppliers.
  • Run your own procurement for high-value and EU tenders: like low-value tenders, if you prefer to run your own procurement, there is a process you can follow to select the most economically advantageous tender. We can manage this for you to ensure compliance with public sector procurement regulations.

Step 5 – Manage your contract; now you have your new contract in place, make sure you set key performance indicators (KPIs) and service level agreements (SLAs) and monitor these quarterly or yearly. We will help ensure your supplier contract has the appropriate service conditions and clauses.

We hope this helps you run an efficient and compliant procurement process for your school resulting in best value contracted services. Remember, the Hub is here to help you throughout the process and manage your tenders free of charge, funded by the Department for Education.

Find out how we can help your school today