Types of procedures

Once you have found a contract you might want to bid for, you will need to familiarise yourself with the procedures that the council uses before you decide whether your business can do the work.

In the main these consist of the following:

  • Quotations - This is where we usually invite between one and three written quotations which will be subject to the council's standard terms and conditions of contract.
  • Open tender procedure - This is a procedure for inviting tenders without prior shortlisting of providers.
  • Restricted tendering procedure - This is a procedure in which providers are invited to tender who have been previously shortlisted. This is therefore a two stage process that allows commissioners to avoid having to deal with an overwhelmingly large number of tenders.
  • Framework agreements - This is a general term for agreements with providers that sets out terms and conditions under which specific purchases (call-offs) can be made throughout the term of the agreement. A framework agreement may also allow a mini competition to be undertaken. In most cases a framework agreement itself is not a contract.
  • Competitive dialogue procedure - This procedure is only used in complex procurements where the council does not consider that the open or restricted procedures will allow for the award of a contract. This procedure will allow for a dialogue with potential bidders.
  • Negotiated procedure - This is where a purchaser may select one or more potential bidders with whom to negotiate the terms of the contract. An advertisement in the Find a Tender Service (FTS) is usually required but, in certain circumstances as described in the regulations, the contract does not have to be advertised in FTS. An example is when for technical or artistic reasons or because of the protection of exclusive rights, the contract can only be carried out by a particular bidder. However this procedure is rarely used.

For further information visit the Find a Tender Service.

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