The face of public procurement is changing
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The face of public procurement is changing

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26th April 2022

The face of public procurement is changing

From 1st June 2022 ‘Social Value’ will account for 10% of the scoring in any new public tender processes [1] in Northern Ireland. This means that a ‘bigger-picture’ view will be taken with regards to public procurement, and that the benefits for the target community will be of paramount importance.

The significance of this should not be underestimated, it is a monumental shift. Social Value is a huge term encompassing everything from job creation and sustainable materials to mental health and culture. It means that contracting bodies will look beyond the price of a proposal and see how it weighs up in terms of long-term benefits for the community and environment.

The Social Value contribution can take many forms, what works for a community in inner-city Belfast may not work for one in Enniskillen, and that’s the beauty of it, this tailored approach will ensure communities get what works for them. It is also an opportunity for tenderers and contractors to reflect on their own working practices and showcase their strengths -what’s not to love?

Gauging what works will require a detailed stakeholder consultation in advance of tender submissions, and that’s where MCE come in. With our experience in stakeholder consultation and expertise in the field of Social Value, we are excited to bring our skills to this important new area.

We are eager to use and expand our knowledge of Northern Ireland and its communities to ensure that the benefits of this new legislation are real and long lasting. We will help our clients understand the needs and strengths of those impacted by any proposed development, as well as ensuring these communities are heard and their needs recognised.

For us Social Value is more than a box ticking exercise, it’s the future of sustainable development and the future of business. We want to use our skills to ensure a greener, more prosperous and more competitive Northern Ireland - we want to make government money work for everyone.

By Katie Murphy

For more information see:

Buysocialni.org
Department of Finance – Scoring Social Value

[1] This requirement will apply to contracts above the threshold where the Procurement Regulations apply. Currently service contracts above £122,976; and construction contracts above £4,733,252. In total this accounts for 97% of government procurement spending in NI