The Local, Regional and National Context for Procurement
Wigan Council's Procurement Strategy
In response to the National Procurement Strategy for Local Government we produced our first procurement strategy in 2004 that focussed on the efficient, effective and economical delivery of our priorities and improvement objectives at that time. This has now been updated by our Corporate Procurement Strategy 2008 - 2011 (.pdf, 326kb). Our updated strategy sets out the key priorities for procurement in supporting the delivery of the community and corporate plans:
- Ensuring our procurement practices are transparent, open and accountable and comply with our constitution, contract / financial procedure rules and national and European legislation.
- Advancing and promoting the 'procure to pay' process which minimses manual input, provides robust information for procurement decisions and harnesses the latest technologies.
- Contribution to savings targets by addressing procurement arrangements, seeking opportunities to reduce prices, improve quality, maximise efficiency and achieve greater outcomes for residents.
- Collaboration with other public sector organisations to maximise procurement leverage, reduce duplication, share information and explore alternative procurement methods.
- Stimulating the local economy and encouraging small/medium sized businesses to apply for contracts.
- Extending the partnership principle, already established in the areas of property management, social care and housing, into other areas of procurement.
- Promoting the attainment of social, environmental and community benefits through procurement processes.
- Identifying opportunities for service improvement through greater collaboration with the voluntary and community sector.
AGMA Procurement Hub
The Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) Procurement Hub (external link) has been established to encourage greater collaboration in procurement between the Greater Manchester authorities and their partners. The purpose of this collaboration is to secure significant efficiencies for member authorities by maximising economies of scale, utilising the latest e-procurement systems and eliminating process duplication. The AGMA Procurement Hub also ensures that emerging regional and national best practice is identified and shared.
The AGMA Procurement Hub also provides a key data analysis function to its member authorities through its 'SpendPro' spend analysis service. As well as providing vital management information to individual authorities, SpendPro is now informing key collaborative procurement strategy across the AGMA region.
If you are a supplier, you will find the pages on AGMA Contracts (external link) and Current Projects (external link) particularly useful.
Government Procurement Service
The Government Procurement Service (external link) (formerly known as Buying Solutions) is an executive agency of the Cabinet Office. Its overall priority is to provide procurement savings for the UK public sector as a whole and specifically to deliver centralised procurement for central government departments. The GPS views centralisation, standardisation and aggregation of spend on common goods and services as a key mechanism to deliver significant, sustainable cost reductions to government.
The GPS is the largest Professional Buying Organisation (PBO) in the public sector and the only one with a legal remit to trade across the whole of the UK public sector. In 2010/11, it managed £7.6bn of customer spend through its procurement arrangements and services, working with 14,500 organisations in central government, health, local government, devolved administrations, education and the not for profit sector.
If you are a supplier, you will find the pages on the Government Procurement Service's Frameworks and Agreements (external link) and the Supplier Zone (external link) particularly useful. The Frameworks and Agreements page links to a directory of those agreements which can be utilised by governmental bodies whilst the Supplier Zone provides important information for existing and potential suppliers. In order to maximise your chances of supplying local government organisations including Wigan Council it is recommended that you familiarise yourself with the opportunities to participate in these governmental procurement agreements.