Contracting authorities (i.e. organisations that spend public money) are required to comply with the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (Regulations) when buying goods and services which meet a certain value, subject to certain exceptions and exemptions. Contracting authorities are required to advertise the opportunity in the form of a Contract or OJEU Notice, to interested suppliers, in the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).
A Contract Notice must state, among other things:
- the specific details of the goods and services to be purchased, divided into separate lots where possible; and
- which procurement procedure will be used.
The contracting authority will also specify the selection criteria that it will apply in order to produce a shortlist of tenderers (pre-qualification criteria). The pre-qualification criteria are used to assess the tenderer’s ability to perform the contract in question, as well as its financial standing and eligibility.
Suppliers who meet the pre-qualification criteria will be invited to submit tenders. All tenders will be scored against the award criteria.
The contracting authority will use the award criteria to identify the tender that is the most economically advantageous.
The tender will then be awarded in accordance with the time limits and process prescribed by the Regulations, which is further detailed in the tender documents.
When the successful supplier(s) is chosen a Contract Award Notice will be published.