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Frequently asked questions about procurement

What type of things do we purchase?

The range of goods and services required across all of our service areas is vast.

Examples include:

  • vehicles
  • stationery
  • office equipment
  • cleaning materials
  • books
  • furniture 
  • window cleaning
  • catering
  • foodstuffs
  • pest control services
  • IT hardware and software
  • civil engineering
  • construction
  • social work services
  • consultancy

Details of our previous and current contracting activity can be found under our 'Buyer Profile' on the Public Contracts Scotland website.

What is the procurement process?

The procurement process is the method used by public sector bodies in order to establish contractual relationships for goods/services/works.

We follow the process laid out by the Scottish Government on the Procurement Journey website and in line with any application legislation, as well as our General Contract Standing Orders. 

For more information please visit key procurement documents.

How do I find out about contract opportunities?

Tenders for goods and services above £50k and works above £500k are advertised on the Public Contracts Scotland website. There you will be able to see details of current and forthcoming contracts plus information on contract awards and past tenders.

How are tenders evaluated?

We have an obligation to offer the best value for money services to our residents and require an exceptional standard of performance from our suppliers.

When selecting a supplier, we must make sure that they will provide value for money, and that goods and services will be delivered effectively.

In the list of evaluation criteria, cost and quality are usually the most important criteria. We are however looking for the best balance of quality and price, not just the lowest price. Details of the specific evaluation criteria and the relative weighting of the criteria are included in the invitation to tender document that suppliers receive.

At any time during the tender process suppliers may be invited to give a presentation/product demonstration or attend a meeting/interview to aid the evaluation process. We may also conduct site visits to see first-hand how potential suppliers organise their work.

Does the council operate any Approved Lists?

We do not operate any Approved Lists.

What is e-Procurement?

e-Procurement combines internet technology with procurement best practice to streamline the purchasing processes, increase efficiency in the ordering process and reduce costs for both contracting authorities and suppliers.

What are the benefits of e-procurement to suppliers?

Participating suppliers can realise many benefits from online or e-procurement, including:

  • increased visibility and access to markets without additional marketing efforts
  • a single point of access to our 'market'
  • faster and more efficient tendering
  • increased order accuracy through electronic ordering
  • a consistent purchase order format.

Overall, e-procurement can help suppliers reduce costs in process, marketing, and admin operations.

What rules and regulations should I be aware of?

As a local authority, there are regulations that we must follow when procuring goods, works and services. It is important that if you wish to contract with us that you are fully aware of the rules and regulations which govern the way we operate.

We have a legal requirement to comply with the European Union (EU) Procurement Directives, which govern the way in which public sector procurement is conducted for contracts above specified thresholds and these rules alter the way in which contracts are awarded, based on the value of the contract.

For further detail please refer to the Key procurement documents page.

Page last updated:
04 May 2021

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