The SME advisory panel, made up of 24 entrepreneurs and leading business figures boasting a wide range of experience, is working with the government to ensure that by 2022, £1 of every £3 invested by Government in goods and services goes to small and medium-sized enterprises.
The panel was formed in November 2016 and are currently looking at key strands of government procurement activity, including:
Meet The Buyer
Looking for new ways to put SMEs in touch with government buyers so they can better understand government’s requirements and respond to tender opportunities. The group is also crowd-sourcing positive examples of government already doing business with SMEs.
Supply chains and contract management
Much government spend with SMEs is though a supply chain where small businesses sub-contract with larger businesses. This group is looking for ways to improve that process and ensure it is fair to SMEs.
Since 2015 all government adverts for contracts above £10k and non-devolved public sector contracts above £25k must be advertised on the Contracts Finder website. This group is working with the Contracts Finder team to identify improvements in the way the website works and drive greater transparency of opportunities.
Many common goods and services are bought collectively through framework agreements, lists of suppliers from whom buyers can contract with in a streamlined fashion. Frameworks have attracted criticism from SMEs and this group is looking to see improvements in the way they are set up to encourage more SME participation as well as looking to see greater use of modern collective buying methods such as Dynamic Purchasing Systems.
Financial thresholds and accreditation requirements
†his group is looking at some of the financial and accreditation requirements often seen in government procurements which may prove a barrier to bids from SMEs. The group has commented on the new government selection questionnaire and is making recommendations to ensure that requirements in procurements are proportionate.
Emma Jones MBE, the Crown Representative for SMEs, also works closely with the 24 experts to help more small businesses in the UK bid for and win government contracts.
- Campbell McDonald, Baxendale
- Graham Lancaster, TORI Global Ltd
- Jon Kent, Zeco Energy
- Rob Driscoll, Building Engineering Services Association
- Francis Toye, Unilink Group
- Elizabeth Vega, Informed Solutions
- Ian Fishwick, AdEPT Telecom plc
- Jonathan Lewis, The Live Group
- Mark Jankovich, Delphis Eco
- Stephen Massey, SJM Specialist Security
- Peter Woolaghan, REACT Engineering Ltd
- Farooq Mohammed, es-p Group
- Tim Coleman, Abacus HR
- Felix Lewis, CF Architects
- Sue Waller, Knowledge Powered Solutions Ltd
- Arnab Dutt, Dexo Technologies
- Stephanie Staubach, TopMarks Claims Management
- Judith Hall, SmartSourcing
- Caroline Brown, Caja
- Paul Edwards, P & S Automation
- Mark Taylor, Lucas Fettes & Partners
- Stephen Kingan, Nexor Ltd
- Pamela Cook, Infoshare Ltd
- Hugh Griffiths, InZpire Ltd