Delivering EU Compliant Tenders
With core expertise in the EU Public Procurement Directive 2004/18/EC and associated Public Contracts Regulations 2006 #5, we have delivered over £1 billion of EU compliant tenders across a range of categories including:
- Major Works & Decent Homes programmes
- Responsive Repairs and Voids
- Repairs Materials
- Developers/Constructors Frameworks
- Vehicle Fleet
- Audit and other Consultancy Services
- Mechanical & Electrical Services
- Environmental Services & Grounds Maintenance
- Agency Staff Services
- Cleaning & Window Cleaning
Support can be tailored to suit client requirements, ranging from light touch 'critical friend' guidance during the process to lead consultant role with full responsibility for design and delivery of tender packages, contract and tender documentation, project management, publication of EU contract notices, evaluation, award and bidder liaison.
Using our unique eTender system CirrusTenders we manage all our tender projects fully electronically, and welcome the involvement of your internal audit team to understand the controls and efficiency benefits our eTender platform brings to the process.
Procurement Reviews of either whole organisations or specific departments/group subsidiaries, covering all aspects of organisational procurement including:-
- Benchmarking of current value for money against our extensive database of market rates and deals across the sector
- Identifying opportunities for cost savings and other efficiencies
- Structure and resource allocation for purchasing within the organisation
- Regulatory compliance
- Efficiency of purchasing processes and mechanisms that:-
- Maintain and develop supply chain service levels
- Ensure quality control
- Achieve ongoing value for money and transaction cost efficiency
- Meet regulatory obligations
Award winning (see our Cirrus News for more details) 2nd Generation Partnering efficiency projects are procurement, efficiency and viability reviews of contractors and suppliers to Housing organisation clients
- Identified savings opportunities are used to drive supply chain efficiency with benefits shared between the Housing organisation and the contractor/supplier
- Drives extra value from existing contracts and partnering agreements while preserving contractor margins
- Contributes directly to Housing organisation efficiency targets with minimal disruption
- Recognised by the Centre for Construction Innovation, Constructing Excellence and a finalist in the 2007 CIH UK Housing Awards, the 2nd Generation methodology has been tried and tested with over 20 contracting organisations across the UK of all sizes and disciplines
Instead of directly employing purchasing staff, Cirrus can act as your internal procurement team – effectively outsourcing your procurement department. More of our clients are choosing this holistic approach to procurement as an effective alternative to project by project consultancy.
Our approach to effective delivery is practical and team-based. Having a team-based approach allows us to apply the flexible capacity necessary to ensure delivery of objectives, as well as ensuring continuity of support throughout the year. This approach represents good value for money as clients have access to a team of procurement specialists able to deliver targets and outputs over and above the day to day advice and internal support expected of a purchasing manager role.
An important feature of the outsourced procurement service is that it is tailored to meet individual client needs. However, a typical range of services includes:
- Hands on management of EU compliant tenders
- Supplier rationalisation
- Assessment and improvement of procurement processes
- Benchmarking prices
- Achieving cost savings
- Procurement training for internal staff
- Review of policies and procedures
We deliver the service through a combination of scheduled onsite time to co-ordinate specific activities, telephone support, staff training and regular drop in surgery days.
Strategy & Policy
Strategy. Policy. Action plan. The three crucial documents to structure and control procurement within your organisation.
The Cirrus team can either assist you to align your existing documentation with best practice, or, following consultation with the relevant personnel within your organisation, produce bespoke documentation that meets your corporate and VFM objectives.
We have detailed experience of producing procurement strategies and have advised the Audit Commission Housing Inspectorate on how to assess strategies and procurement in general as part of the previous KLOE inspection regime.
Lack of time or resources to deliver a project has the same impact as lack of skills, the result is either delays in delivery or sub-optimal outcomes. Engaging additional external support when needed to give your existing team a lift and to deliver projects over and above existing workloads can be a valuable decision.
The Cirrus team do not just represent an additional pair of hands, they are specialists with extensive experience in the delivery of procurement projects from complex tenders through to implementation of purchase order processing systems and eProcurement systems.
CirrusTenders eTender system
CirrusTenders is a web-based e-Tender service www.cirrustenders.co.uk (UK Housing Excellence Awards Product of the Year Finalist 2009 and 2010).
CirrusTenders is bundled as part of any Cirrus led procurement, or available as a subscription service for buyers undertaking their own tenders, but wishing to optimise their tendering efficiency and minimise the environmental impact of the tender process.
It allows buyers to manage the tender process electronically, eradicating paperwork, removing the need to issue documents to bidders and standardising and controlling the format of responses to make evaluations easier, focussing on content rather than marketing gloss.
“etendering can deliver average savings of 21 per cent for a non-Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) tender and 25 per cent for an OJEU tender”
Key characteristics of CirrusTenders are:
- Proven: Over £1.5 billion of tenders managed by CirrusTenders
- Popular: Over 6000 suppliers and contractors registered to use CirrusTenders
- Cost effective: 25% reduction in tender administration costs
- Efficient: Identified 1/3 reduction in evaluation time
- Secure: Fully encrypted server with downloadable audit reports
- Environmentally friendly: Over 1,000,000 sheets of A4 paper saved
- Compliant: Supports EU compliant tender procedures
- Easy: Web-based - No software to install or manage
- Flexible: Customisable to your individual tender style and content
Dynamically generated tenders built around your documentation give better results than traditional upload/download vault or postbox systems.
We convert your documentation and put the tenders on the system on your behalf, so there is no additional administration or training requirements for your staff. For more information please follow the links below or visit our Frequently Asked Questions section.
Cirrus Consortium Materials Framework
The Materials Framework includes a selection of suppliers to the housing sector who have been chosen via a tender issued in the Official Journal European Union (OJEU). The framework was undertaken as an EU compliant open tender procedure, as detailed in Regulation 15 of the UK statutory instrument Public Contracts Regulations 2006/5.
The resulting framework is available for use by all contracting authorities (as defined by Regulation 3 of the UK statutory instrument Public Contracts Regulations 2006/5), but particularly Registered Providers of Social Housing, local authorities and ALMOs (Arms Length Management Organisations).
Every Registered Provider that uses a Cirrus Consortium framework agreement qualifies for free membership to the consortium. This allows the member Registered Providers to have an active input to the frameworks under the consortium, while retaining the ability to use framework suppliers autonomously.
The Materials Framework is focussed upon the supply of goods and services associated with housing maintenance and refurbishment. There are 6 lots covering the following categories of materials:
- Lot 1: General building materials
- Lot 2: Plumbing and heating materials
- Lot 3: Electrical materials
- Lot 4: Kitchen materials
- Lot 5: Paint
- Lot 6: Tools
Key benefits of the framework include:
- Establish your own contract with a choice from 24 leading suppliers
- Keep the flexibility and ownership of managing the contract and specification as you choose
- Supports a range of supply chain models including managed stores, direct delivery and branch supply
- No need to tender via OJEU directly as the EU compliant framework is pretendered. The time and resource saved can be used to focus on driving additional value for money from your supply relationships
- Choose from a wide range of repairs and maintenance materials
- There is no requirement to use specific financial or billing systems so you have the flexibility to pay the supplier how you choose
- Free membership to the Cirrus Consortium allowing for active input into the Central Purchasing Body
- Free to use, therefore no fees will be charged to buying organisations for consortium membership or using the framework
Advice & Training
Procurement advice and training at all levels from introductory workshops for non-technical staff through to sector orientation workshops for procurement professionals transferring to the public sector from private sector environments. Recognised experts in EU Public Procurement legislation, we provide practical and realistic guidance on the regulations and legislation affecting procurement in the housing sector.
Bespoke training to address specific procurement learning requirements can be provided on request. For more details contact Simon Reed at firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07828 121270
Purchasing Costs Benchmarking
"Knowledge is power"
Cirrus Purchasing maintain an extensive database of market costs, which we use to test the value for money achieved by our clients as part of our review process (see Procurement reviews). This is a powerful tool for identifying and driving cost savings.
To test the value for money your current purchasing terms are achieving, or to validate critical tender results, we can undertake benchmarking analysis on your behalf as either a standalone service or as part of a wider project.
The Cirrus team have extensive experience of designing and establishing consortium framework procurements on both a national and regional basis. Counting amongst our clients consortium groups in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, we have handled consortium tenders in excess of £300 million, covering a range of categories including building materials and development frameworks for both constructors and consultants.
Delivering social objectives
Here at Cirrus we are passionate about making a difference, and promote and advise on using intelligent procurement to deliver social outcomes. Whether you use engage with social enterprises or want to drive local labour opportunities, we can help you deliver tangible positive impacts for your communities that go beyond the usual 'tickbox' criteria and soft statements of good intentions found in policies. As part of this commitment we are proud to have been delivery partners for the Merseyside Single Procurement Vision, an EU funded initiative to raise the profile of social entrepreneurship amongst public sector buyers.