Public Spend Forum Europe – Public Procurement Highlights from this Week

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Public Spend Forum Europe is dedicated to European public sector procurement, and aims to be a global community and knowledge network for public procurement and the public sector market. Around Europe, we are talking about well over a trillion Euros of money from taxpayers and citizens being spent by government and public sector bodies of some sort. Worth doing well, you might consider. So here is a roundup of what we were discussing this week. If you find anything interesting, please click through to the full article:

Risk Aversion in the Public Sector – The Buyer’s View

This was a guest post from Dan Warnock, Category Manager for Home Group, a social enterprise that provides general needs housing, supported housing services, and home ownership options aimed at helping some of society’s most vulnerable people take control of their own lives. We recently wrote two articles on risk aversion among public sector procurers, and Dan offers a genuine "view from the coalface," on the reasons (or ‘excuses’ as he puts it) for not taking risks.

Sweden Wants To Cap Suppliers' Profits - Why?

Most governments have to some extent embraced the idea that profit-earning (capitalist) firms can provide services to the public sector – even those that have in the past been delivered by the public sector. But now there seems to be an increasing mood of concern, even distrust, about the private sector's motives and indeed performance. We look at this and take a proposal in Sweden as a 'case in point' -- capping the profit that can be earned by firms engaged in delivery of certain welfare-related services on behalf of the government.

Goodbye PQQ, Hello SQ - Can Procurement Adapt?

The Pre-Qualification Questionnaire has become the Selection Questionnaire, and we will need to re-programme our brains to say "SQ" when for many years "PQQ" has tripped off the tongue. Actually, we are exaggerating the importance of this change in real operational terms, but getting used to the new words will prove genuinely difficult for many of us veterans, we suspect. Recently, CCS, the Crown Commercial Service (part of the UK Cabinet Office) issued a Policy Note which explains the change and the reasons behind it - read this article to find out more.

LCTA and Confidence - Guarding Against Low Bidding Failures

We wrote recently about the US government "lowest cost technically acceptable" (LCTA) policy, which requires an organisation to choose the lowest cost tender from potential providers that meets the basic requirements defined by the buyer. There are no other evaluation criteria used in the selection. It seems to be becoming less popular, but, it does highlight a couple of interesting and quite challenging issues for public sector buyers more generally -- we discuss!

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