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Nov 15, 2018

The days when an SME would have to sacrifice up to 65 (non-earning) hours to pitch for a government contract are, if not over, then at least coming to an end, insists Emilia Cedeno, who is running the Digital Outcomes and Specialists (DOS) framework for government procurement agency the Crown Commercial Service.

In this video she describes the measures CCS is taking as it works towards a target of getting 33% of government business awarded to SMEs. Among these are a much shorter, more simple, public sector contract, written in plain English; work with government (including local government) buyers to improve briefs and to be clearer about budgets; and encouragement of ‘pre-tender engagement’ to open up contracts to not-just-the-usual-suspects.

Poss Apostolou, who has recently joined the private sector from GDS, describes the involvement of GDS in the moves to make procurement more SME-friendly and also the impact of MHCLG’s ‘Local Digital Declaration’ which councils must sign up to in order to pitch for funding for local digital projects.

Workshops with local authorities, which among other things will promote the procurement of digital components as a means of breaking up traditional, all-encompassing council service contracts, are being rolled out as part of the campaign.