Procurement and supply chain bulletin: 4 August 2023

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Procurement and supply chain bulletin

4 August 2023

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Procurement and supply chain

PPN 08/23 Using Standard Contracts

A new PPN on Using Standard Contracts has been published and is applicable to central Government departments, their executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies. Other public sector bodies may wish to apply the approach set out in the PPN.

Where there is no suitable Government framework, this PPN requires 'in-scope organisations' to adopt the standard contracts as the base templates for relevant procurements, rather than creating bespoke contracts. In-scope organisations are expected to apply the PPN as soon as practicable. The benefits of standardising are numerous, including helping ensure you comply with legal requirements and procurement policy, resource saving, and assisting suppliers by having a consistent approach to terms and conditions across Government.

Transforming Public Procurement update

The Procurement Bill cleared Commons Report and Third Reading stages in June and will progress to ‘consideration of amendments’ in the House of Lords which has been scheduled for Monday 11 September. Key issues raised at Report stage included national security and surveillance equipment, modern slavery and human rights, organ harvesting, tax transparency, direct award, workers rights, and NHS procurement. There were divisions on four amendments, with the Government winning all four. Once both Houses of Parliament reach agreement, the Bill will then proceed to Royal Assent.

View the Hansard records of all stages of the Procurement Bill’s progress, the current version of the Bill and the list of Commons amendments

Central digital procurement platform

Cabinet Office colleagues continue to engage with e-procurement systems providers to assist them in understanding the changes they will need to make to support the new noticing regime. The Cabinet Office has recently released the first four notice types to the test environment and shared the supporting technical documentation. This includes the planned procurement notice; the tender notice; the transparency notice and the contract award notice. This will enable e-procurement systems providers to start work to align their systems to the new regime, test the publication of these new notices in 'Find a Tender' and provide useful feedback to the development team. It is anticipated that Cabinet Office will release new content to the test environment on a quarterly basis thereafter. Work continues to develop functionality to allow suppliers to submit their common data more efficiently and effectively when they bid for opportunities. The Cabinet Office is currently working with suppliers, contracting authorities and e-procurement systems providers to understand their requirements and will shortly start developing a prototype with them for further feedback. If you would like to be involved in this process, please email

Sign up for regular communications from the Cabinet Office's Transforming Public Procurement team

Cyber Unpacked

We have published Cyber Unpacked – a series of explainer videos on cyber security. These animations are aimed at all non-technical audiences, including councillors and officers. They should raise awareness and increase understanding of the topic within councils, and support decision-making by senior leaders when engaging with cyber risk.

National Risk Register

This week, the Cabinet Office published the 2023 National Risk Register which is the Government’s assessment of the 89 most serious risks facing the UK’s safety and security. The risks covered include Russia cutting off gas supplies, an influenza pandemic and the collapse of social care.

Social care

Last week, the Government announced a £600 million over the next two years to increase the capacity of the social care workforce. Helen Whately, Minister of State for Social Care, also wrote to councils and others setting out the priorities for adult social care this winter. We are pleased that the Government has listened to our calls and protected this money; however, we have said that councils need certainty that social care funding will continue in order to be able to commit to sustainable long-term funding for social care providers and workers.

Building safety

The Government has launched the Cladding Safety Scheme (CSS) to fund the remediation of dangerous cladding for medium-rise buildings where a responsible developer cannot be held responsible. The Government has also published the Code of Practice for the Remediation of Residential Buildings, which sets out expectations for conducting remediation projects.

Swimming Pool Support Fund

Councils applying for the Swimming Pool Support Fund should note that the online portal is open from Friday 4 to Friday 11 August. Your application must have the approval of your council’s Section 151 officer. This fund is expected to be oversubscribed and highly competitive. Outcomes will be announced by the end of September.

iNetwork celebrates 20 years

Colleagues at iNetwork are celebrating 20 years of enabling local public service organisations – individually and collectively – to deliver more innovative, high quality and cost-effective services to their customers, patients and communities.

The iNetwork Connected Procurement and Commissioning Programme hosts a series of events including regular touchpoint meetings, networking events and roundtable discussions. The iNetwork website includes a number of case studies as well as details of events and how to get involved. iNetwork's annual conference (see below) is open and free to all public sector colleagues.

'Procurement Essentials' – How to achieve transparency in your procurement

As part of its 'Procurement Essentials' series of articles, Crown Commercial Service has recently uploaded advice on achieving transparency in procurement. The Transforming Public Procurement programme puts transparency at the centre of its vision so that the spending of taxpayers’ money can be properly scrutinised.


Please get in touch if you want us to highlight procurement-related opportunities for your organisation.


Procurement Reform roadshows (Newcastle, Birmingham, Norwich, Bristol, Liverpool, Sheffield and Nottingham)
Tuesday 3 October–21 November | In person

iNetwork Annual Conference
Thursday 30 November | Hyatt Regency Manchester, 55 Booth Street West, Manchester M15 6PQ and online


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