Public Spend Forum Europe – Public Procurement Highlights From This Week

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:

Trade-Offs in Public Procurement - Rigour Versus Speed

We are running a series of articles looking at the trade-offs in public procurement. Politicians and others like to think that we can do everything at once, but we can’t. For each of the trade-offs, we are looking in more detail at the nature of the potential conflict, then we suggest some steps that public procurement professionals can take to minimise the potential for real issues and problems. The nature of these trade-offs means that there are no magic solutions, but there are ways to reduce the risks.

For instance, if you want more speed in your public procurement processes, that’s fine as an objective. But the trade-off is that you may well lose some rigour. If evaluation processes are rushed and corners cut, there will be more likelihood of the wrong supplier selection decision or later challenge. But there are ways (which we outline) to address those risks.

 

Policy Goals Versus Value for Money

Our second Trade-Off article looks at the important issues around “policy through procurement” goals. Those include supporting smaller firms, innovation, encouraging employment, sustainability issues and so on. There is quite a list these days, and it is easy to see why using public procurement expenditure to support these worthy aims is an attractive idea. But there is also a danger that it can negatively affect value for money, either by restricting the supply market, or by adding to suppliers’ costs (which get passed on to the contracting authority). Again, we look at the issues and suggest some ways to mitigate the risks.

 

Commission Translates Buying Green Handbook - Now In 23 Languages

Well, that title pretty much says it all! The handbook is 80 pages of useful advice, guidance, and case studies all about the topic of buying green – how to take into account green and sustainability issues when you’re doing public procurement. It is clear and well-written and contains a lot of useful material from strategy through to detailed advice on running a procurement successfully whilst incorporating green objectives.

 

"What To Do When ..." Our Series of Concise Tips for the Holiday Season

We’ve also started a new series for the summer titled “what to do when ….” It pulls together some of our previous advice and guidance on a range of interesting topics for public sector buyers – actually, much of the advice should be useful to private sector folk too. In this introductory article, we explain what we are doing and then look at “what to do when a supplier fails to deliver”.  As well some snappy tips, we provide links to other articles we’ve published around the topic.

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