How to do Business Police Procurement North West

Police Procurement
North West
How to do
Police Procurement
North West
Police Procurement
North West
For many years the public sector has been criticised for either failing to
promote contract opportunities adequately or making the whole tender process
cumbersome through duplication. The North West Police Forces have
responded to this in a positive manner and have joined together to create a
new collaborative that will be known as Police Procurement North West
On the 1st April 2010 a new portal hosted on the Bluelight e tendering
portal at will be launched with the
intention of having all tender opportunities in the one location and common
documents from all Forces available to standardise the tender process.
The North West of England and North Wales has a combined population of 7.5
million and consists of a diverse landscape ranging from the Scottish Borders to
the north and the Welsh Mountains to the south. Two large conurbations are
centred in the cities of Manchester and Liverpool and are responsible for major
employment opportunities, the extremes of the region are mainly rural and
relies on agriculture and tourism. It is in this environment that the PPNW will
collaboratively spend approximately £330 Million of public sector money each
year, providing a wide range of commercial opportunities.
PPNW will be made up of all of the North West Region Police Forces namely;
❑ Cheshire Police
❑ Cumbria Constabulary
❑ Greater Manchester Police
❑ Lancashire Constabulary
❑ Merseyside Police
Police Procurement North West How to do Business
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The aim of this document is to try and offer comprehensive guidance and
advice to all existing and potential consultants, contractors and suppliers who
wish to conduct business with Police Forces in the North West. The document
will set out the way we approach business with regard to diversity and ethical
issues as well as providing details of the tender thresholds and associated
❑ North Wales Police
We have made a commitment to advertise ALL requirements i.e. Requests for
Quote (RFQ), Pre Qualification Questionnaires (PQQ) and Invitation to Tender
(ITT) regardless of value through a single e tendering portal hosted at Bluelight
e Tendering website
You are recommended to register on the Bluelight Emergency Services
E-Tendering System which can be found at You will
need to click on the “Register Company” link within the “Supplier Area” box
on the left to start the registration process. A user guide can be obtained by
clicking the link in the supplier area box. Registration is FREE and as the site is a complete internet based e-tendering
solution, all you need is internet access, no special software or equipment is
You are able to view current opportunities without registering by clicking the
current opportunities link, however to express interest you will need to
register and/or login.
When registering it is recommended that you use a generic email address e.g.
[email protected] and a job title e.g. Sales Administrator rather than
individual staff names and email addresses to prevent any inconvenience when
staff changes occur. Please use an email address which is regularly monitored
so you do not miss out on notification of opportunities or alerts during a
tender process.
Once registered you will be able to view and express interest in tender
opportunities from all of the UK Police Forces and specifically to those Forces
within the PPNW. You will also receive automatic email notifications from this
site of any future opportunities advertised providing you complete the contract
category interest section by ticking all relevant category boxes.
It is critical that you keep your registration details updated to ensure you get
the correct notifications in time.
Our aim is to maximise procurement collaboration between participating forces
so as to obtain optimal contract value and reduce duplication of work for both
the Forces and their Suppliers. In its dealings with suppliers and contractors, we
will endeavour to adhere to the following standards:
❑ We will respond promptly and positively to complaints,
comments and suggestions.
❑ We will comply with The Public Contracts (Amendment)
Regulations 2009.
❑ On request, we will debrief successful and unsuccessful bidders
promptly of the outcome of a tender, giving constructive feedback.
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❑ When dealing with suppliers and contractors we will be
courteous and helpful.
❑ We will honour our contractual commitments.
❑ Commercial relationships will be based upon co-operation;
we will seek to avoid adversarial and confrontational relationships.
❑ We will not divulge information submitted in confidence to third
parties except as is necessary to comply with legal requirements.
❑ We will make every effort to make payments within
agreed timescales.
❑ We will attempt to resolve contractual disputes amicably and fairly.
❑ We will attempt to procure goods and services in a responsible way,
both environmentally and ethically, working towards achieving
sustainable procurements where ever possible.
❑ We will raise awareness of Force Policies and legislation relating to
Diversity. Including but not limited to age, disability, gender
reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy, race,
religion and belief, sex and sexual orientation'.
In exchange, the region asks that as a supplier, you do the following:
❑ Honour your contractual commitments.
❑ Ensure that you receive an official order or contract before
supplying any goods or services.
❑ Assist us in building healthy commercial relationships.
❑ Possess policies that are communicated effectively throughout
the organisation prohibiting direct discrimination, indirect
discrimination, harassment and victimisation
❑ Understand that you are trading on our conditions of contract,
unless otherwise explicitly agreed.
❑ Provide the goods and/or services of appropriate quality,
in accordance with our instructions.
❑ Notify us of any difficulties as early as possible.
❑ Do not attempt to undermine our existing supply arrangements.
❑ Provide valid invoices and other documentation promptly and
to the correct location.
❑ If required, provide details of your Business Continuity policies to
ensure continuity in supply of goods and services if faced with
All public expenditure is governed by both legislation and internal financial
thresholds that will make every purchase subject to a specific procedure, low
value purchases may not require a formal procedure but it must be
demonstrated that the purchase is value for money and in line with best value
practice. It should be noted that all contracts / orders regardless of value will
be placed with an official purchase order.
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❑ Notify us if at any time you feel that a Force is treating you
unfairly or unreasonably.
NB Values indicated are only an indication and will vary from force to force
Police Procurement North West How to do Business
Low level purchases
Low level purchases (circa under £10,000/£20,000) do not require a formal
tender procedure however it must be demonstrated that best value practice
has been followed and that the product or service is value for money
Requests for Quote (RFQ)
Purchases circa £20,000 plus should have a minimum of three quotations, if
competition exists a Request For Quote exercise will be undertaken via the
Bluelight e tendering system, this may be advertised or restricted to a set list
of suppliers, depending on the urgency and size of the market place.
Invitation to Tender (ITT)
Purchases over Circa £50,000, but under the current European limits will be
advertised, the primary advertisement tool will be the Bluelight e tendering
portal but there may be occasions at the Head of Procurement discretion where
additional publications or web sites may be used for example Contrax Weekly,
specialist web sites or construction line. The ITT may be advertised or restricted
to a set list of suppliers, depending on the urgency and size of the market
place and the existence of a national framework.
Use of National/OGC/Buying Solutions Contracts
All forces are actively encouraged to make use of existing contracts that are
open to use by emergency services or public authorities, where such contracts
exists the rules of engagement will be followed.
Purchases over the European Union (EU) Threshold
Purchases that exceed the EU threshold will be advertised via the Bluelight
e tendering website but additionally will be subject to;
❑ The process will be managed by a procurement specialist
❑ Will be advertised in the European journal
❑ Will be subject to the dictated timescales
❑ Will be returned via the relevant Legal department
❑ Will be subject to the Remedies Directive (Alcatel Stand Still)
prior to an Award
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❑ Contracts will be signed by the relevant Police Authority
Police Procurement North West How to do Business
European Union (EU) Procurement Directives set out a legal framework for
public procurement, the purpose of which is to open up the public
procurement market and to ensure free movement of goods and services
within the EU. The overriding principles of the European Treaty are to ensure
compliance in letting contracts and include: Openness, Transparency and
Equality of Treatment.
The Directives cover Supplies, Services and Works
The current financial thresholds are valid from 1st January 2010 (Subject to
bi-annual review).
Supplies: -
Services: -
Value should be based on the length of the contract not the annual value, for
example if a service was identified at £70k per annum and the contract was
for three years with a potential two year extension then the value would be 3
x 70 = £210k not 5 x 70.
Some categories for example Legal services, education, health and social
services may come under Part B and are excluded from the full EU tendering
requirements. Under the restricted and competitive negotiated procedures
there must be a sufficient number of participants to ensure genuine
competition. Normally, the minimum will be three.
The table below gives an overview of the procedures together with the
associated time scales
Advertised so that anybody who responds must be invited
to tender, mainly used where there are a limited number
of suppliers or the market you are dealing with is not
Standard 52
Used after a PQQ process has identified the company you
consider most suitable / capable of delivering the works,
goods or services required.
Standard 37
This procedure is used when the terms of the contract can
be negotiated with one or more providers but it should still
be subjected to competition.
Standard 37
This procedure is used when the terms of the contract can
be negotiated with one or more providers but it should
still be subjected to competition and the procurement has
an urgent requirement (urgent as defined by the
Standard 15
Police Procurement North West How to do Business
With ECN 30
With ECN 30
With ECN 10
With ETD 40
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With ECN 45
Used to negotiate the terms of the contract with one or
more persons selected by it. It is used for “particularly
complex contracts” where the authority is not objectively
able to define the technical means capable of satisfying its
needs or objectives, or specify either the legal or financial
make up of a project. As a general rule there must be a
call for competition.
Standard 37
With ECN 30
ECN – Electronic Contract Notice – can reduce time by 7 days
ETD – Electronic Tender Document – can reduce time by 5 days
PIN – Prior Information Notice
PIN - Prior Information Notice
Forward planning will allow the placement of a PIN in the journal and shorten
the timescales. 52 days must elapse between the publication of the PIN and
placing the advert. The Directive formalises case law regarding PIN notices.
Article 35(1) makes it clear that these are only compulsory where the purchaser
wishes to take advantage of the reduction in timescales that are available with
their publication.
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Police Procurement North West How to do Business
7.1 Business Case
A business case is used to justify the procurement activity and expenditure.
The development and agreement of a business case is an important tool to
ensure senior management agreement and stakeholder "buy in" to the
7.2 Project start-up
This will ensure that all the relevant steps are considered and appropriate time
is allocated to them.
7.3 Market Assessment
The purpose of this step is to make sure that staff is familiar with the market
in which we wish to do business. We make use of the National Supplier data
base, OGC and Due North Tendering system to asses any potential suppliers.
7.4 Market creation
The purpose of this is to help stimulate the market where limited supplies exist.
There may potentially be limited response to our requirement because of the
nature of the requirement or the state of the market. If we think this may be
the case, we should try to stimulate the market place. The actions we may
need to take can include reviewing our requirement and making it
commercially viable, or developing a procurement strategy which will attract
7.5 Requirements definition and procurement strategy
This is to ensure end users and stakeholders are involved in the development
of the requirements specification. The procurement may not deliver if it is
disconnected from its end-users. It is vital that end users are engaged from the
outset and their needs understood.
Determine the procurement route.
❑ The development of the procurement strategy should follow the
most appropriate procurement route. We will evaluate the different
procurement routes and publish an OJEU notice, as appropriate.
Selecting the appropriate procurement route from the outset
reduces the risk of legal challenge, and helps ensure procurement
is smoothly run and delivers value for money.
Plan the procurement.
This is to ensure that we have properly defined our requirements.
❑ Requirement should be clear and unambiguous. An inadequate
requirement is a common reason for procurement not providing
the right goods or services, for the best value for money.
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7.6 Producing the requirement
❑ We need to draw up a plan, ensuring all the tasks and deliverables
are identified in sufficient detail, to allow progress to be tracked
and managed.
7.7 Supplier selection
This is to ensure that all suppliers are treated evenly and a stranded
methodology is applied to each project. The process is started by selecting and
evaluating suppliers early in the procurement process.
❑ This can begin with inviting expressions of interests from suppliers, in
response to an OJEU notice or other call to competition. Followed with
assessing the suppliers' responses to information requests in the OJEU
notice, or pre-qualification questionnaire, and invite the selection of
suppliers to tender or negotiate, depending on the procurement
procedure selected.
We will clearly define our approach to supplier selection and evaluation, from
the outset.
❑ We will put in place a documented, planned approach to evaluation.
This is important to demonstrate a fair and transparent procurement.
Supplier selection and evaluation will be a continuous process.
❑ Evaluation will be ongoing throughout the procurement, and there will
be clearly defined evaluation stages of selection and evaluation. This
will culminate in the award of a contract for the most economically
advantageous tender.
7.8 Proposal Evaluation
This is to help select those suppliers to be taken forward to the next stage of
the procurement.
❑ Will follow your pre-defined evaluation model and criteria. The
evaluation will assess the quality of the proposed solution and how
it fits with the requirement specification.
7.9 Contract preparation
This is to develop a contract which clearly sets out the rights and obligations
of the supplier and our organisation.
❑ The level of contract preparation required will depend on the
complexity, or size and value of your procurement.
❑ For a more complex requirement, it may be necessary to develop
specific terms and conditions and accompanying schedules. This
may also involve negotiation with short-listed suppliers, to
finalise draft contracts.
❑ May be required to prepare a Service Level Agreement.
❑ It is advisable to have a configuration management plan in place, to
cover version control and amendments. Some points to consider:
Police Procurement North West How to do Business
May have a low value straightforward requirement and use your
own standard terms and conditions, or you may place an order
under the pre-agreed terms and conditions of a framework
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❑ Does the contract accurately represent the requirement?
❑ Have stakeholder requirements and views been taken
into account?
❑ Do the potential providers have realistic solutions to
meeting the requirement?
❑ Does the organisation have the necessary skills and
resources to meet its obligations under the contract,
and for managing the contract?
❑ You should seek appropriate expert procurement and legal
advice, as required. Also involve the future contract
manager at this point and as part of any negotiations
going forward.
7.10 Bid evaluation
There will be a separation of the financial and qualitative elements of the
❑ We will evaluate the financial and qualitative elements separately.
We look at these two strands of the evaluation together, after
completing the respective evaluations. Make a judgement based
on overall value for money.
7.11 Award
This is to identify the process to be followed when notifying the bidders of the
outcome of any project to ensure it is completed in a professional and in
accordance with published guidelines.
❑ We will inform both the successful and unsuccessful
bidders in writing.
❑ Debrief of all bidders. Debriefing can help suppliers to improve their
competitive performance. It can also help us to identify ways to
improve the process for the next time, and possibly improve on
Award notice
This is to ensure that the project is closed in a controlled way. This is also a
good time for us to capture lessons learnt. This can assist with future projects.
7.13 Implementation / Transition
This is ensuring that any changes are managed and implemented in a smooth
and stress free way:
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7.12 Project Closure
❑ We will need to complete and publish an OJEU award notice within
48 days of contract award, when an OJEU procurement has been
conducted. Also, note the requisite "standstill period" between
decision and contract award, according to the procurement rules,
as a result of the Alcatel ruling. (if applicable)
Moving towards acceptance – we need to manage the contract
and the implementation process, leading to acceptance.
There should be a clear transition process from the procurement
stage to contract management - it is important to ensure that the
organisation understands and fulfils its obligations (Authority
Responsibilities) so as not to delay implementation.
Contract Management
This is to clearly outline the contract and relationship management practices to
be followed upon award of the contract. There should be expert and
dedicated contract management for the term of the contract.
It needs to have robust contract management procedures with
staff, to manage the contract. The contract management
provisions should be built into the contract.
The level of contract management we will need will depend on the
type of contract. A standard commodity contract should only
require a straightforward approach to contract management,
whereas a more complex service type contract will require
dedicated and expert contract management. Inadequate planning
for, and carrying out of, contract management is a crucial reason
for user dissatisfaction and not realising VFM. It is important to
have continuity in the relationship and for the contract managers
from both the contracting authority and the supplier to have been
engaged early in the procurement process.
We will monitor supplier performance against agreed service levels.
This requires you to have agreed quality metrics in the contract that
allow the quality of a service to be measured.
We aim to continuously improve in performance or increase
value for money. This is achieved, principally, through providing
incentives to the provider - these are usually built into the
contract itself.
Further information
Please note the information above is intended as a guide for information only,
full details of EU Directives can be found at The Office of Government
Commerce's (OGC) website: in the Procurement Policy and
EU Rules section.
The Public Contracts (Amendment) Regulations 2009
Human Rights Act 1998 double spacing as other above
Data Protection Act 1998
Freedom of Information Act 2000
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
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The following main legal requirements must be adhered to during the
procurement process:
Race Relations Act 1986
Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000
Disability Discrimination Act 1995 and 2005
Welsh Language Act 1993
Sex Discrimination Act, 1975
Sexual Orientation and Religion Regulations 2003
Equal Pay Act, 1970
Equality Act, 1998
TUPE Regulations 1981 and 2006
The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2006
(the WEEE Regulations”)
Further to the above all of the Forces are fully supportive of all aspects of
diversity including ethnicity, race, religion, age, gender, disability and sexual
orientation. In this respect we welcome expressions of interest from the
ethnic minority, disabled and other diverse business communities, in addition
to the voluntary sector.
All Contracts will incorporate a No Smoking Policy in relation to its vehicles,
buildings and premises. Smoking for all personnel is prohibited while at work
or on police premises, this rule will be strictly enforced.
In our delivery of services to the community there can be a significant impact
on the environment, especially in the way it manages its properties and
transport fleet. In recognition of this responsibility the PPNW will be
implementing policies and procedures that will strive towards reducing any
impact on the environment through its activities. Furthermore the Policy will
address the wider issue of Sustainability where it can influence the type and
quantity of resources it consumes and its effect on the local economy. Further
to this it will promote good standards of commercial practice by adopting the
following methods recommended in the National Police Environmental
Procurement Policy.
Early involvement with stakeholders to develop functional specifications
allowing suppliers to develop innovative solutions, and closer working
relationships with suppliers in the promotion of environmental awareness to
encourage alternative environmentally preferable products from sustainable
or recycled sources at competitive prices.
The identification of products and services that will help conserve energy, water
and paper during the manufacturing process and reducing waste through
minimisation and observing Waste Packaging Regulations.
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Ensuring compliance with all environmental, legislative and regulatory
requirements in the procurement of the goods, services and works it requires.
Considering the whole life cost of a product including its ultimate disposal and
supporting environmental labelling schemes
Working with suppliers to ensure performance and publishing key
performance indicators in relation to progress in the areas of environment and
It is recognised that this is an area where there is rapid change and will
therefore review its policies and procedures regularly in line with continuous
improvement initiatives.
In order to maintain relationships with suppliers and to ensure that these
objectives are achieved the following safeguards are put in place to
protect both parties;
Confidentiality of Information
Any information obtained during the tendering process should
not be divulged to any third party, any issues relating to pricing or
performance must be treated as “Commercial in Confidence”
by both parties.
Freedom of Information Act
The above Act came into force on the 1st January 2005 and we will
comply fully with any requests for information made under this Act.
The Act will enable any person (with certain exceptions) who makes
a request to a public body to be informed in writing whether or not
it holds information of the description specified in the request (“the
duty to confirm or deny”). If information is held to have the
information communicated under “the obligation to disclose”
within 20 working days of the request (or give notice of any ground
of exemption) under Section 10 of the Act.
Full details of the Act can be obtained at
20000036.htm or by contacting our Freedom of Information Officer (Data
Protection extension 4049).
All aspects of the development of e Commerce is supported as this portal
reflects in the tendering function. Development is also being undertaken with
regard to e requisitioning, e procurement, e invoicing, e catalogues as well as
in certain cases the use of e auctions.
It is hoped that this document has given the reader an overview of the newly
formed PPNW and the way it wants to work and do business with potential
suppliers. If further information is required then please refer to the web
portal at
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Reviews are also being undertaken of the purchase to pay processes with a
view to eliminating waste and improving efficiencies where it is understood
that the increased use of purchase cards has been identified as one solution.