CCS extends management consultancies framework deadline
Closing date for submissions will now be February 21 following pressure from SMEs for extra time following the change for “previous supply” period from one to three years
The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has extended the deadline for tender submissions for lots 1-3 of the Management Consultancies Framework by a week to February 21. The previous deadline was 3pm tomorrow, February 14.
The deadline for tenders in lots 4 to 8 is unchanged and is set for May 9.
The extension follows CCS’ move towards making it easier for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to tender for the framework and calls from SMEs to be allowed more time to bid as a result of late changes to the requirements for “previous supply”.
In a recent shift of approach, CCS told companies bidding for the framework that in terms of details of previous supply, which is necessary for would-be providers to show that they can demonstrate capacity under the framework, the requirement is now 2200 days over three years. The previous requirement was to demonstrate the same amount of work over one year.
The change to three years appears to be in response to complaints from procurement specialists and SMEs, reported in Government Computing, that a 2200-day bar in one year was too high for many smaller companies to reach. The perception could have been gained that the framework had a bias towards larger management consultancy providers.
CCS has also indicated that the framework is open to bids from consortia of providers, including SMEs, saying “Potential Providers should note they are able to submit bids as part of: a group of economic operators, sub-contracting or as a single entity as detailed in paragraph 6 (Contracting Agreements (sub-contractors and groups of economic operators)) of Attachment 1 (Invitation to Tender.)”
It added that, “CCS has agreed a spend target of 20% via SMEs by 2020 via this Framework Agreement.”
Discussing the change to three years for previous supply, a CCS spokesperson told Government Computing: "We have listened to feedback from potential providers and have revised the criteria accordingly."
It is understood that when the final clarification “Q&A” period for the framework closed, the total number of questions had reached over a thousand.