New OGC documents – break out the egg-nog!

For all of you involved in public sector procurement – I have a suggestion.   Why don’t you settle down this Christmas, in front of a roaring wireless-enabled laptop, a  glass of Smith’s Olde English Egg-Nog (lovingly brewed in Malaysia)  in hand, and relax by browsing through OGC’s newly published three-part Guidance on the 2009 EU Remedies Directives?

Yes, with perfect timing for Xmas, OGC have published a whole raft of guidance documents.  As well as the Remedies material, there is a Guide to Contract Management in long term or complex projects, and a new ‘below threshold' Pre-Qualification Questionnaire with accompanying guidance.

I don’t know whether publishing all this now is a masterstroke (let’s face it after a few days of the family and Xmas TV, a couple of quiet hours with the Remedies Directive starts looking a really good option) or not....but joking aside, these are important issues for public sector procurement folk.

The Remedies directive is key, as it introduces a whole new set of punishments for transgressions against EU rules.  And based on a quick scan, the OGC authors have made a tricky and dry subject actually very readable and fairly clear (although it is a more complex subject than I had certainly realised up to now)....

I won’t comment on the standard of the other documents as I had some input into them, and I am also obviously biased about their importance!  But if you talk to suppliers, you will know that badly designed PQQs are one of their biggest negatives about government procurement. This is I believe the first time OGC have laid out some detailed best practice in this area.  And the ‘complex contract’ guidance covers some really quite strategic issues that apply in the cases of large and often very critical contracts; it is also relatively unusual for an OGC document, in that it is in the main applicable to the private sector as well as the public.

Anyway, enjoy, as they say....and do let me (or OGC) know if you have any comments.

Peter Smith

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