Organisations in both the public and private sectors are facing increasing pressure to reduce costs and improve performance. New regulatory requirements, globalisation, increases in contract volumes and complexity have resulted in increasing recognition of the importance and benefits of effective procurement procedures and contract management.
Many of these procurement procedures need to conform to EU regulations through OJEU.
This blog will offer some practical things to consider in any procurement procedure that will help you enhance the defined frameworks.
What is OJEU?
The EU Procurement Directives have established public procurement rules that apply to any public sector purchases above the defined thresholds. The directives which currently apply in the UK open up public procurement within the European Union and ensure the free movement of supplies, services and works.
Many organisations have carefully described procurement procedure frameworks. The following tips are designed to enhance and create greater value from these procedures:-
- Do you have to do this procedure?
It’s always important to check that you are obliged to conform to a procedure. The threshold for OJEU contracts are always being changed so make sure you understand your obligations and seek the correct procedure for you
- Establish and maintain your project teams early
Invite and build teams to support a smooth procurement process and do it early. Give clear briefings as to the objectives of the contract and make sure everyone is committed to a set of common objectives, particularly timescales
- Touchpoints and reviews
At key points in the procedure step back and take a review of progress against your objectives and procurement procedures. Involve your teams and trusted outsiders to take an objective look at the project to keep on track
- Review yourselves as well as suppliers
Any procurement process requires a lot of ongoing analysis, particularly of suppliers. Take the opportunity to review the performance and effectiveness of the purchasing organisation as well. This can unlock bonus improvements that were not identified as objectives of the process
- Develop your contact strategy
Beware not to see your contract strategy as linear and refine your strategy as you go. This can be a productive output of touchpoints and reviews
- Always think about Exit as well as Entry
As the procurement objective is often paramount, elegant contract exit is often de-emphasised. Maintain a balance of thinking about the start and potential end of any contracted relationship, particularly to preserve residual values and goodwill
- Pre-formal procedure engagement
What a valuable time this can be? Use eager suppliers to provide you with any insights they may have that might streamline the procurement process. Get them to carry out assessments or evaluations of processes and procedures. This is usually a win-win. Suppliers get insights into the organisation’s needs at first hand and buyers get innovative ideas to use now or save for later.
- Wash up and learn for continuous improvement
As this procedure is always going to be repeated, honest self-reflection can open ideas to improve the procedures next time round. Continuous improvement will encourage teams to commit next time around
A balance of a well-developed framework modified with appropriate and pragmatic solutions should always deliver the best outcomes so don’t be afraid to try out a new thing every time a project gets underway