Earlier this month, Chloe Smith, the cabinet office minister, gave word of plans to help smaller firms bid for and obtain public sector work.
“With £230 billion per year spent on goods and services right across the whole public sector, government wants to seize the opportunity to help hard-working SMEs get on by competing for and winning this business,” she said according to the Cabinet Office.
The government says SMEs (small to medium sized enterprises) make up a massive 99.9 per cent of the 4.5 million businesses in the UK.
September saw the launch of a consultation carrying forward recommendations from Lord Young about making a ‘single market’ where public procurement is concerned that’s friendly towards this sort of business.
The consultation builds on reforms aimed at making government businesses increasingly accessible where SMEs are concerned, and offering recognition for good practice in the public sector more generally, the Cabinet Office reports.
Under the proposals being consulted on, those suppliers looking to undertake business with with public sector bodies would see all of these following one collection of principles in the purchasing of services and goods.
They will standardise and make simpler the advertising, bidding and payment process for public sector contracts over the sector, too.
“Historically SMEs have been shut out of government business. In the past bidding for public sector contracts was time-consuming, expensive and overly bureaucratic,” commented Conservative MP Ms Smith.
Taking away barriers and laying out one consistent collection “of SME-friendly principles” over all of the public sector would mean proper support was provided “to encourage significant business and growth opportunities for SMEs, and help give the UK a better starting position in the global race,” she said.
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