About this guide
Supporting Local Business and SMEs
Advertising our contracts
How to tender
Terms and conditions
Procurement Support Packages
Electronic Trading

About this guide

As a Council, we spend approximately £682 million each year. £339 million of this is third party spend relating to goods, services and works. £36.5 million of this is currently procured collaboratively through the North East Procurement Organisation (NEPO).

This guide will help you to determine whether you wish to apply for any of our forthcoming contracts, and provide you with clear and concise instructions of how to do business with us.

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Newcastle City Council is supporting Local Business and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

Newcastle City Council is supporting local businesses through their procurement activity by introducing a 'Quick Quotes' initiative which enables the Council to run a simplified quotation procedure for the purchase of goods and works between £25,000 and £100,000.

The initiative forms part of the North East Procurement Organisation (NEPO) Electronic Tendering system known as ProContract www.nepoportal.org.

'Quick Quotes' transforms the way quotations for goods and works, are sought and awarded in order to ensure more local businesses receive the opportunity to bid for work. This means using the 'Quick Quotes' system which randomly selects two quotations from registered Newcastle based or North East Regional suppliers. There will be no requirement for the Council to carry out a risk assessment where the 'Quick Quotes' initiative is used for the purchase of goods; Constructionline will form the risk assessment for works. 

If you would like to utilise this initiative, then you will need to register free of charge at www.nepoportal.org and select 'Register Free' from the links on the left hand side of the screen. If you are already registered, please log into the NEPO Portal and update your company profile. When registering or updating your account it is important that your profile contains the appropriate categories for your organisation, company classification, postcode and a correct email address. If you are unable to register/log into the system or have any technical queries, then please contact the NEPO Portal Helpdesk on 0191 433 5949 or email info@nepoportal.org.

As we will be utilising Constructionline more extensively, you may wish to register with them at http://www.constructionline.co.uk. If you need any advice or help with registering on Constructionline, please contact Aaron Good on mobile 07881 354286 or by email Aaron.Good@capita.co.uk

The Council wants to make sure that small and medium enterprises are given the same opportunities as more-established companies when tendering for work. We recognise that SMEs can enhance competition and provide responsive, innovative solutions. Therefore we aim to let contracts in such a way that encourages SMEs to tender.

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Advertising our contracts

When letting contracts, we are obliged to follow our own set of procedures as well as European and National legislation. This determines how contracts will be advertised.

Where legislation dictates that contracts must be advertised in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU), we will ensure that this is done promptly and in line with the legislation.  

To search for such contracts, please visit the Tenders Electronic Daily (www.ted.europa.eu) website which is maintained by the European Commission. This site shows all of our contracts which are currently being advertised in the OJEU. Please note that we may also advertise these contracts in the local press.

To find our contracts simply put the following in the search fields:-

Select language (EN)
Select 'extended search'
Search scope = last five editions (drop down box)
Country = UK (drop down box)
Type of Authority = Regional or Local Authority (drop down box)
Authority name = Newcastle (input)

Contracts which do not have to be advertised in the OJEU will be advertised either in local press or specialist trade publications.

Contracts can be viewed by visiting our electronic tendering website (www.nepoportal.org). This link will take you directly to the North East Procurement Organisation Portal where all 12 local authorities in the North East advertise procurement opportunities.

This website is used to call for competition on the majority of procurements over the value of £25,000 and includes EU related contracts. You can register on this website by entering the 'Suppliers Area' and following the registration instructions. This website is also used by other local authorities, so you will also be able to see other procurements that are taking place in the region.

There are some of the Social Care contracts that are not presently being advertised via the electronic tendering website. If you are interested in these contracts, please look in the local press or relevant specialist trade publications.

You may also find it useful to visit the Government Procurement Service website http://gps.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/ which acts as central purchasing bodies for local authorities.

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How to Tender

To be considered for a contract, you need to express an interest which can be done via our electronic tendering website in the majority of cases or by responding in accordance with instructions given in a particular advert that appears in the appropriate publication. All of our calls for competition will include instructions on how to do this.

Our electronic tendering website and the list of contracts currently being advertised is updated on a regular basis.  

Once you have submitted an expression of interest, documents will be made available for download on our electronic tendering website. It is very important that you follow the instructions given. If you don't, it may lead to your submission not being evaluated.

The tender documentation is likely to include information such as:

  • Instructions on how to tender
  • the specification for the contract
  • how the contract must be priced
  • evaluation criteria
  • the contractual terms on which you will be contracted in the event of being successful
  • other relevant information

You may be asked to complete a questionnaire which will determine whether you meet our minimum corporate requirements. 

The questionnaire will assess your competency for performing the contract in the following areas:

  • technical ability
  • financial standing
  • equality standards
  • health and safety standards
  • insurance requirements
  • quality and complaints procedures
  • environmental standards

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Terms and Conditions

When suppliers receive orders for the provision of goods and services there are terms and conditions which must be followed. See the full list (pdf, 21.8kb).

Any special terms of contract that are appropriate to particular procurements such as goods, services and works will be sent out in our tender information.

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Procurement Support Packages

The City Council's Business and IP Centre, along with the North East Procurement Organisation (NEPO) and B2B North, deliver NEPO Business Club, a programme of procurement support events aimed at increasing the competitiveness of local businesses, including tender readiness. Most of these events are free to attend. Details are available on http://www.bipcnewcastle.co.uk/events/, www.nepoportal.org or contact john.musham@newcastle.gov.uk for more information.

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Electronic Trading

As part of our Corporate Commissioning and Procurement Plan, we are committed to increasing the levels of electronic business. This includes electronic tendering, ordering, processing invoices and direct payment.

Our aim is to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of letting contracts whilst maintaining a robust and competitive procurement.

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Page last updated: 
11 October 2017
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