Guidance on third party bid management organisations

Recently we have become aware of the growth in third party organisations offering to write, submit and manage bids for NHS Workforce Alliance frameworks.

Their target market appears to be predominantly SMEs. We have been contacted by a number of suppliers concerned about the claims being made by some of these organisations in their sales approaches and marketing literature. Therefore, for the avoidance of doubt, the Alliance can confirm the following:

  • Nobody can guarantee bidders a place on an Alliance framework
  • The Alliance treats all bidders equally and in line with the published procurement procedures for each framework, the Public Procurement Regulations and Public Law
  • The Alliance avoids engaging in framework discussions with either bidders or third parties outside the published processes
  • We have introduced additional questions at qualification stage to identify those bidders using a third party to write, submit or manage their bid
  • Submission of the bid and the content remain the sole responsibility of the original bidder. It is the responsibility of the original bidder to ensure that appropriate steps are taken to minimise the risk of commercial information being compromised, or anti-competitive practice taking place as a result of third parties managing multiple bids
  • If the Alliance is approached by third parties, claiming to act as agents for (or representatives of) bidders for forthcoming frameworks, we will direct them to take part in the same pre-market engagement events as all other bidders, in order to ensure equal treatment
  • Third parties wishing to attend pre-market engagement events, claiming to act as agents for (or representatives of) bidders for forthcoming frameworks, will be required to provide a letter of authority from the bidder concerned, prior to attending

If you would like more information, please don’t hesitate to contact your local Alliance partner.

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