How it works

SPA’s compliant frameworks can be used by local authorities, social landlords and other public sector bodies to procure works, goods and services for the construction, refurbishment and maintenance of social housing and public buildings.

A framework is an agreement with suppliers to establish the terms governing contracts to be awarded during the life of the agreement with regard to scope, quality, price, quantity envisaged and importantly the terms in which organisations can "call off" contracts to be awarded through the framework  

Suppliers compete through a competitive procurement process evaluated on a price/quality ratio ensuring best value at all times.  Publicly funded bodies access the suppliers that have successfully been awarded to the framework through their chosen "call off" process in line with the framework terms.

The five stages

Stage 1: Pre-tender engagement

  • We monitor legislation, building regulations, standards and innovations that create a need to adapt or improve the way that works, goods and services are procured

  • We host in-depth engagement sessions with our partners and supplier network to inform our procurement process

  • We gather feedback from framework users on improvements and innovations required for our procurement solutions

  • We work with industry experts to ascertain potential future requirements and needs of our public sector partners

  • Working in collaboration with our partners and supply network through our extensive pre-tender engagement process helps to inform our procurement route, lotting structures, value bands, regional split, specification and pricing schedules ensuring our offerings meet the needs of our partners

Stage 2: Public tender

  • To ensure compliance with EU Directives and UK Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015, framework opportunities are advertised in Public Contracts Scotland (PCS) and the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) via Tenders Electronic Daily

  • Frameworks are typically split by workstream, region and value band to attract a wide range of suppliers, so that partners throughout the country have a choice of local supply chain and/or national operators to deliver their projects

  • Documentation comprises of an Invitation to Tender (ITT), which specifies the works, goods or service being procured, European Standard Procurement Document (ESPD), technical quality questionnaire and pricing templates that a supplier is required to complete and submit. Also included are the General Terms & Conditions, which govern how the framework operates and individual projects are called off by partners.

  • Suppliers enjoy free and open access to the ITT and Offer documentation, accessible via our online e-portal. Suppliers are allocated a pre-set timeframe in which to collate information and submit a bid.

Stage 3: Evaluation and award

  • We review every submission in detail

  • We then apply the MEAT principle (Most Economically Advantageous Tender) to take account of criteria that reflect qualitative, technical and sustainable aspects of the tender submission, as well as commercial aspects when reaching an award decision. We do this by weighting the various sections accordingly

  • Tenderers are allocated their overall score according to their final MEAT weightings

  • To ensure compliance with EU Directives and UK Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015, a Contract Award Notice is published in Public Contracts Scotland and the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Journal (OJEU) via Tenders Electronic Daily

  • A detailed Tender Report is prepared showing the quality, price, and best overall value scores (MEAT)

  • We typically appoint five or six of the highest scoring tenderers to each lot within the framework agreement. This may vary dependent on type of framework

Stage 4 : Call off projects

  • Our team engage with both our partners and appointed companies throughout Scotland to identify suitable projects

  • Once a project has been identified, we assist partners throughout the "call off" process. The team provide technical and procurement advice, manage the Expressions of Interest, and verify prices where required

  • Partners contract directly with the appointed company to deliver the project requirements

  • We continue to monitor the project, liaising with both partners and appointed companies, to help identify and resolve potential issues, and ensure the timely and cost-effective delivery of the project

  • At the end of each project we get feedback from partners on the performance of the appointed companies, and currently enjoy a 95% partner satisfaction rating

Stage 5: Community benefit

  • At the end of each financial year, partners who meet a certain threshold for projects are eligible for a rebate. Since our inception, partners have received over £3.1M through the rebate scheme

  • We encourage our partners to utilise their rebate for local community social value projects

  • As a not-for-profit organisation, any surplus generated over the financial year is re-distributed into SPA’s Community Benefit Fund. SPA’s Executive Board members are eligible to apply for a portion of the fund each year to use for projects for their local community
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