A Contract Notice is how a public sector procurement officer formally tells all potential suppliers about a public sector contract opportunity i.e. it is the advertisement of the procurement opportunity to the market.
The Contract Notice will include enough information to allow you to decide whether to bid for the contract opportunity or not, as the Contract Notice must contain the minimum and specific requirements for the procurement exercise.
All Scottish public bodies must publish their Contract Notices on Public Contracts Scotland for contracts valued at £50,000 or above for goods and services (also known as regulated procurements) The only exceptions to this are as follows:
- Where a PIN can be used as a call for competition;
- When the Negotiated Procedure without Prior Notification procurement procedure is used (this can only happen in strictly defined and exceptional circumstances).
Where can I find Contract Notices?
Contract Notices can be found via “Browse Notices” in Public Contract Scotland, and then by selecting “Current Opportunity” as the Notice Type and then selecting “search” as per below:
Your search will then provide a list of Contract Notices, which you can select and look at in more detail.
The Contract Notice will contain the following information:
- The name and contact details of the lead buying organisation;
- If applicable, joint procurement details i.e. the details of the other buying organisations involved;
- Details of where the procurement Documents, including the European Single Procurement Document (ESPD), are available from. The ESPD is the document used by the procurement officer to confirm whether a bidder is capable, and has the capacity, to meet the contract requirements. More information can be found in the ESPD station;
- Which public bodies will be entitled to use the contract (particularly if the contract is being placed on behalf of a group of public bodies);
- The type of contract e.g. goods or services;
- A description of the goods or services to be purchased;
- The geographical place(s) where the contract is to be performed (known as the Place of Performance);
- Whether the contract will be split into lots, and if not, why not;
- The duration of the contract;
- The scope of the contract, either by value or volume. The estimated total value of the contract should include all lots and all optional extension periods;
- The main commodity or service being procured e.g. IT equipment, and any other items which are not covered by the main category;
- The procurement procedure that the tender will follow e.g. Open Procedure, Restricted Procedure, etc.;
- The time limit for the receipt of tenders or requests to participate. In an Open Procedure the time limit detailed in the Contract Notice is for the receipt of tenders i.e. the tender deadline. Where the procedure involves a separate selection stage the time limit detailed is for the request to participate i.e. the deadline for submitting selection information;
- The minimum standards, selection and exclusion criteria that apply to the contract as well as the basis on which the winning bidder will be decided i.e. the criteria which will be scored;
- Whether suppliers can offer a 'variant bid' i.e. an alternative way of meeting the requirements. This can be a useful way for suppliers to innovate;
- Information on limiting the number of candidates to be invited, if applicable;
If the contract is over £4 million in value whether and what Community Benefit requirements there are.