How it works

Frameworks are umbrella agreements that set out the terms, that include specification, quality, price, quantity, under which individual contracts (call offs) can be made during the lifetime of the framework (normally 4 years). Legislation governs the way frameworks are run. Suppliers compete through open competition to be appointed to a framework. Publicly funded contracting authorities – our clients - then call off individual contracts.

The five stages

Stage 1: Pre-tender engagement

  • We monitor legislation, building regulations, standards and innovations that create a need to adapt or improve the way that works, goods or services are procured

  • We gather client and supplier feedback to identify and validate future procurement needs

Stage 2: Public tender

  • To ensure compliance with EU Directives and UK Public Contracts Regulations 2015, framework opportunities are advertised in Contracts Finder, Public Contracts Scotland, Sell2Wales and the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) via Tenders Electronic Daily

  • Frameworks are typically split by workstream, region and value band to attract a wide range of suppliers, so that clients throughout the country have a choice of local suppliers or national operators to deliver their projects

  • Documentation comprises an Invitation to Tender, which specifies the works, goods or service being procured. It also inlcudes the Offer Document, which comprises a technical quality questionnaire and pricing templates that a supplier needs to complete and submit, as well as the General Terms & Conditions which govern how the framework operates and individual projects are called off by clients.

  • As part of their offer all suppliers wishing to become an LHC appointed company also complete a European Standard Procurement Document with questions that address a number of elements. This includes; company standing, financial standing, employment practices, health and safety practices, environmental awareness, capacity and geographical range, installation capability, technical capability, quality management, administrative capability and experience of supplying the public sector

  • Suppliers enjoy free and open access to the ITT and Offer documentation, accessible via our online e-portal. Suppliers are allocated a pre-set set time frame of  at least a month, but often longer depending on the complexity, in which to collate information and submit a bid.

Stage 3: Evaluation and award

  • We review every submission in detail

  • We then apply the MEAT principle (Most Economically Advantageous Tender) to take account of criteria that reflect qualitative, technical and sustainable aspects of the tender submission, as well as price when reaching an award decision. We do this by weighting the various sections accordingly

  • Tenders are ranked according to their final Value for Money score, which takes account of the weightings for each section

  • To ensure compliance with EU Directives and UK Public Contracts Regulations 2015, a Contract Award Notice is published in Contracts Finder, Public Contracts Scotland, Sell2Wales and the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Journal (OJEU) via Tenders Electronic Daily

  • A detailed Tender Report is also prepared, showing the weighted scores under each heading, value for money index, and company or companies recommended for appointment

  • We typically appoint three or four of the highest scoring tenderers to each framework agreement regional lot

  • Numbers are based on likely demand and other considerations

Stage 4 : Call off projects

  • Our nationwide network of client engagement officers “engage” with both our “client” contracting authorities throughout England, Wales and Scotland to identify suitable projects

  • We then assist clients wishing to “call off” a project under the framework, guiding them through the procurement process, providing technical and procurement advice, managing the Expressions of Interest, and verifying prices

  • Clients contract directly with the appointed company delivering the works

  • We then continue to monitor the project, liaising with both clients and appointed companies, to help identify and resolve potential issues, and ensure the timely and cost effective delivery of the project

  • At the end of each project we get feedback from clients on the performance of the appointed companies, and currently enjoy a 90% client satisfaction rating 

Stage 5: Community benefit

  • At the end of each financial year, as a not for profit, all excess revenue generated through levy income is rebated to our clients, based on project invoice value generated

  • This primary focus of rebates is typically local community social value projects
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