Procurement at DFID

Details of our purchasing arrangements and information for those looking to become a supplier or contractor.

The DFID supplier portal a way for suppliers to register, bid and participate in contract opportunities that we advertise.

Wider business opportunities

How you can work with DFID and how DFID can help you to find new business opportunities around the world.

New developments

Digital Principles for partners and suppliers

From 14 October 2015, DFID expects all partners and suppliers who manage aid programmes with a digital element to adhere to the global Principles for Digital Development

See below for details

Electronic Invoicing

As part of the UK Governments 2016 mandatory e-invoicing initiative, DFID will be moving to electronic receipt of general invoices. This will take effect from Monday 27 April 2015. This service offers many advantages over traditional paper invoices, namely:

  • reduced costs: free to send documents. Removing the postage, paper, envelopes and labour costs associated with sending invoices
  • proof of invoice delivery: guaranteed instant delivery of documents
  • environmental impact: e-Invoicing will assist in reducing your organisation’s carbon footprint and environmental impact, by removing the printing, sending, storing and destroying of paper
  • improved processing time: e-invoicing with remove the delays in posting and processing mail through postal and DFID security systems

For further information, please see attached Supplier Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 259KB, 2 pages)

Introducing our new DFID Standard Terms and Conditions of Contract

DFID in consultation with legal services have reviewed and revised our standard terms and conditions of contract to incorporate new central government initiatives, to provide consistency for suppliers on how they contract with government departments, and to ensure DFID priorities are suitably and properly represented. These updated Terms and Conditions shall be incorporated into all new contracts from the 2 February 2015. Please see Standard Services Contract section below for copy of most recent version and details of any changes.

Upcoming event on opportunities for UK Businesses through the International Development work of the European Investment Bank .

Information for suppliers

UK Government Security Classifications (PDF, 511KB, 2 pages) Policy Change. The UK Government has undertaken a fundamental review of its information classification policy. As a result, a new policy was implemented from 2 April 2014.

Our statement of priorities and expectations for suppliers

Explains our expectations of all suppliers who work with us to manage our programmes. Suppliers are required to set out, in writing, exactly how they will make sure they can realise their commitments. Find out more.

It is of great importance to DFID that we maintain public support for the way that we use the aid budget. We work with a large number of International Development organisations to deliver our development goals and we recognise the need to maintain healthy business relationships. This letter sets out our expectations of suppliers (PDF, 143KB, 2 pages) for the 4 key areas of transparency compliance, tax compliance, engagement of supply chain partners and fair and reasonable rewards and profits.

Digital Principles for partners and suppliers

DFID expects all partners and suppliers who manage aid programmes with a digital element to adhere to the global Principles for Digital Development. New bids should set out how the Principles will be put into practice. In DFID, digital is defined as any external-facing service provided through the internet or mobile to citizens, businesses, civil society or non-government organisations. This includes, but is not limited to information services, websites, transactional services, web applications and mobile apps.

These guidelines will help development practitioners integrate best practice (such as designing with the user) into technology-enabled programmes. They are intended to serve as guidance rather than edict, and to be updated and refined over time. All digital spend in DFID is reviewed by a panel of specialists before work commences.

DFID held its second Supplier Conference in July 2014

Read the Developing Together: conference report 2014 also see the Supplying value: conference report 2013. This year’s Supplier Conference is due to be held in October 2015. After the conference we will upload the Conference Report onto this website, outlining everything that happened at the conference.


There are opportunities for you to help deliver our international development programmes around the world. Every year, we advertise hundreds of new opportunities for contracts.

The DFID supplier portal provides a way for suppliers to register, bid and participate in contract opportunities that we advertise.

Our contracts are open to any company or other body, anywhere in the world. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are particularly encouraged to bid for our contracts, and won around a third of the opportunities offered last year.

To use the supplier portal you must register and complete a company profile. You will then be issued with a user name and password to allow secure access to the portal.

For full details on how to do this, refer to the DFID supplier portal frequently asked questions (PDF, 23.5KB, 5 pages)

Beyond DFID, you can find export and contract opportunities with other aid agencies working in countries worldwide. UKTI through its Aid Funded Business service can help you UKTI also list hundreds of opportunities every month in more than 40 sectors worldwide. Register for updates at UKTI Business Opportunities Service.

Pipeline and upcoming tenders

We are committed to giving suppliers easy access to tendering opportunities. Contracts Finder for Central Government: pipeline aid and international development provides details of future DFID tenders.

Contracts Finder lets you search for information about contracts worth over £10,000 with the government and its agencies.

Contracts awarded

Details of contracts we have awarded and frameworks are available on:

Partnering with DFID

Supporting inclusive growth is a key part of helping countries to develop and graduate from aid. DFID spends nearly £1bn a year on wealth creation programmes in poor countries and many of these are open to participation from business based anywhere in the world. These programmes include financing through grants, loans and other financial instruments and cover activities ranging from infrastructure to water, to agricultural development and to innovation. Awards are made on a competitive basis and you can find out more at Funding and partnerships with businesses in the UK and developing countries.

Another opportunity to partner to promote development outcomes could come from working with CDC, the UK’s Development Finance Institution owned by DFID. They support building businesses in these regions to help create jobs and drive prosperity, and are actively looking for new investment opportunities.

Information and advice

Guidance on Bidding for DFID Tenders

Outline guidance and tips for tendering (PDF, 124KB, 5 pages) for DFID requirements. Please note that as a government department DFID is required to comply with EU Public Procurement Regulations.

Working with developing countries can support growth and help to reduce poverty but can also be risky for companies and others not familiar with the country. UKTI provides information on the risks of doing business overseas.

Multilateral organisations like the World Bank offer advice on doing business overseas and International Finance Corporation compile indexes on the business climate in developing countries

DFID’s network of 28 country offices, predominantly in Africa and South Asia, may also be able to help. The teams there have knowledge of local market conditions and investment opportunities and many will also have contacts with private sector organisations (eg local chambers of commerce) and potential suppliers or other businesses seeking joint ventures.

A list of DFID country office and contacts

Businesses and others investing overseas need to conform to local laws, and should respect internationally agreed principles on good corporate behaviour, including on human rights, transparency and sustainability. DFID has set out the key principles to working in poorer countries in its statement of priorities and expectations for suppliers.

In addition the United Nations set out the key principles to working in poorer countries and offer voluntary codes and standards that business and others can sign-up to. Many not-for-profit organisations offer advice on responsible business including the Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade and Non-Government Organisations, such as Oxfam.

Workshop slidepacks

DFID continues to focus on the long term government strategy to increase the SME supply base and to ensure inclusivity for organisations that have traditionally found routes to accessing work prohibitive for a variety of reasons. We have a strong reliance on the expertise held within supply chains and aim to improve the opportunities for small organisations to work closely with us and to truly understand our needs and requirements particularly given our programmes need to increasingly adapt. Slide packs used during supplier workshops are more widely available to view in this section.

Working with Other government departments

DFID works closely with other UK government department so as not to duplicate efforts. The FCO and BIS also provide help through their services to business and these links are given below:

If you have specific questions relating to your business you can call the Business Support help-line on 0300 456 3565, where trained advisors will be able to assist you with your enquiry. You can also access this support on Facebook.

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Our procurement policies and initiatives

Small and medium sized enterprises (SME’s) Action Plan: August 2015

The Government has launched extensive initiatives since 2010 to improve and increase opportunities for SMEs. The Cabinet Office reports that 26% of direct and indirect contracted business spend in 2013/14 was spent with SMEs. DFID is fully committed to supporting SME’s and to contributing to the Governments targets. The following SMEs action plan (PDF, 424KB, 10 pages) outlines how DFID has and will continue to support the Government’s SME agenda.


As part of the government’s commitment to greater transparency, we publish:

  • all new central government ICT contracts over the value of £10,000
  • all new central government tender documents for contracts over £10,000 (this information is available to the public free of charge)
  • new items of central government spending over £500

Visit Contracts Finder for more information.

Suppliers looking to bid for public sector contracts should be aware that if you are awarded a new government contract, information about the contract will be published. In some cases we’ll make limited redactions before the information is published, or we may not publish the details at all. If this happens, it is to comply with existing law and for the protection of national security.

Duty of care

We have a duty of care policy for suppliers working in dangerous environments. For full details of the policy see the Duty of care: suppliers information note (PDF, 126KB, 5 pages)

Bribery Act 2010 – supplier responsibilities

Suppliers should be aware of their responsibilities under the Bribery Act 2010. Please make sure you read and are compliant with the guidance when considering providing services to us.

Corporate social and environmental responsibility

DFID will strive to purchase goods and services which are:

  • produced and delivered under conditions that do not involve abuse or exploitation
  • have the least negative impact on the environment

For full details of the policy see the corporate social and environmental responsibility information note (PDF, 165KB, 5 pages)

Security policy for contractors, consultants and suppliers

Specifies the requirements that must be met by contractors in the handling, management, storage and processing of information belonging to DFID or its partners. For full details of the policy see the Security policy for contractors, consultants and suppliers information note

Promoting Tax Compliance and Procurement – Guidance to Suppliers

Any supplier bidding for central government above-threshold contracts advertised in OJEU and to which EU procurement rules apply will, from 1 April 2013, be required to make a declaration regarding their tax compliance at the selection stage of the procurement procedure. Promoting tax compliance and procurement guidance (PDF, 300KB, 5 pages) provides details as per Procurement Policy Note 03/13 14 February 2013.

Standard services contract

Please note that we may adjust these to suit the requirements of a specific procurement

Prompt Payment to DFID suppliers

All central government departments are now required to pay 80% of undisputed invoices within 5 days. Suppliers need to be aware of the correct procedures involved to achieve this. As part of the UK Governments 2016 mandatory e-invoicing initiative, DFID will be moving to electronic receipt of general invoices. This will take effect from Monday 27 April 2015. For further information, please see Supplier Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 259KB, 2 pages)

Suppliers must send invoices directly to:

Accounts Payable Section

DFID Financial Management Group


Payment helpline

Telephone: 0845 602 8244 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm)

Central helpdesk

Prompt Payment Quarterly statistics

Financial year 2015 to 2016 Percentage of invoices paid within 5 days Percentage of invoices paid within 30 days
1st Quarter 78.0% 99.0%
2nd Quarter 81.2% 99.6%


We aim to use fair, open and transparent contracting practices and protection for all parties. If you have any complaints with our procurement process, contact our Public Enquiry Point by:


Telephone (UK only): 0300 200 3343

Telephone (from outside UK): +44 (0) 1355 84 3132

If your complaint remains unresolved, contact Cabinet Office’s Supplier Feedback Service.