Alongside other government departments, DFID is publishing all government procurement transactions made in the United Kingdom above £500 dating from April 2010 onwards. Although some data has been published in quarterly or annual datasets, from October 2011 onwards all data will be published on a monthly basis.
DFID has 2 arrangements:
an “e-payment” system is used to pay for all travel transactions booked through DFID’s travel provider
a strictly controlled process within the department for low value purchases and multiple purchases to the same supplier to be paid using procurement cards
Government procurement cards are purchasing cards and are not credit cards. The cards have no credit facility provided on them and all balances for purchases made are cleared each month. DFID also makes use (where appropriate) of e-payment mechanisms or virtual payment methods.
DFID makes use of e-payment systems to realise the benefits of a streamlined purchase to pay process without the need for a physical card to be issued. This is used for all travel spend booked centrally via DFID’s contracted travel provider. Similar arrangements are in place with suppliers who provide goods and services to DFID under central government contracts.
These transactions are highlighted in the spreadsheet. All DFID procurement cards are strictly controlled within the organisation and transaction and monthly limits are in place. They are part of a wider e-procurement strategy designed to increase efficiency by streamlining procurement processes and significantly reducing administration costs.
Procurement cards require significantly less administration and paperwork to purchase necessary goods and services, reducing the cost of each transaction by around £28 when compared to normal paper invoices.
DFID has updated its procurement card policy in line with government policy, introducing further controls to increase value for money.