Public Sector Tenders

UK Public Procurement 2021 – Brexit and Tenders

You might be wondering what’s happening regards Brexit and tenders? What’s the impact on UK Public Procurement 2021? In short, not much immediately. But some interesting changes are on the cards. Brexit transition ends in 2020. On the 1st January 2021 there are some small changes to public procurement. More changes have been announced as the year progresses.

Brexit and Tenders – UK Public Procurement 2021

UK Public Procurement for 2021

The Government has issued information on public procurement post-Brexit.

These are the main issues:

Find a Tender Portal

There is new e-tender service Find a Tender. It will replace the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) in the UK for above threshold tenders. The Find a Tender service (FTS) will be in place on 1st January 2021.

UK high-value tenders will no longer be posted on TED. See Finding Tenders Post-Brexit. However, if the process was started using TED, there is a requirement for dual publishing. So, if there was a PIN published the authority is required to continue publishing on both TED and FTS. This also applies if there are any notices required under the Modification of Contracts (PCR Reg 72 and UCR Reg 88).

Challenging Tender Awards

Challenging Tender Awards and Public Procurement Decisions

You might think about challenging tender awards when you lose a bid. Was the decision unfair? Was the procurement process flawed? Or have you been scored incorrectly?

Challenging Tender Awards

Associate Consultant, Carl Rogers, is an expert on public procurement. In this post he explains what is involved in challenging tender awards and decisions: Understanding public sector procurement regulations, what you can object to and what to consider before commencing proceedings.

This only applies to public sector tenders and procurement. The private sector is not bound by the same rules. But many large companies have their own processes for making a complaint against a buyer’s decision.

What Are the Obligations on Public Authorities When Purchasing Goods, Services and Works?

All public sector bodies (Contracting Authorities in Public Sector Procurement Parlance) must follow the fundamental principles:

  • Transparency – Clear process undertaken
  • Equal treatment – All have access to the same information
  • Non-discrimination – No bias in favour or against companies
  • Mutual recognition – Market access across the EU
  • Proportionality – Requirements are relative and reasonable

These principles are the guiding light. Contract Authorities must consider them every time they procure goods/services and works. If an Authority believes that it may have breached these, it must take corrective action. Not wait for challenges and be directed by the courts.

Public Procurement Thresholds for 2020 & 2021

2020 & 2021 Public Procurement Thresholds

Procurement thresholds for public sector tenders are updated for 2020. Associate Consultant, Carl Rogers, is an expert on public procurement. In this post he explains the changes, the importance of contract values and the effects of Brexit.

Public Sector Procurement Thresholds for 2020


The new procurement thresholds affect new tenders from 1st January 2020 to 31st December 2021. They have been extended post-Brexit (see below) so the thresholds still apply for 2021.

Why are Procurement Thresholds Important?

Public sector buyers must be aware of these thresholds. These are the values above which an advert must be placed to ensure competition. Failure to do so can result in legal action being taken against the contracting body.

The procurement thresholds are applicable to public purchasing. This includes government departments, local authorities, NHS Trusts, utilities, housing associations etc. They cover the following:

See also EU Procurement Rules 2014 which brought in changes to ensure better value for money and improved quality. The reduction of red tape makes it easier for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) to tender.

What has changed

The actual thresholds have increased slightly. This might be due to the fluctuating exchange rates compared to the last threshold renewal. The new thresholds are net of VAT and are as follows:

Beginners Guide to Pricing Tenders

As part of our tender consultancy service, I often discuss tender pricing strategies with clients. This beginners guide to pricing tenders covers the most common topics we talk about when aiming for the winning bid.

You know your business, its costs, competitive pricing and your competition – if you don’t, act now! I cannot tell you what will be the winning price. But this guide to pricing tenders explains some the most important issues when bidding to win a tender.

Beginners Guide to Pricing Tenders

General Pricing Strategy

Tenders almost always have price as part of their evaluation (see MEAT below). So, you must ensure that your company’s pricing is competitive in your market sector.

When undertaking a sales and marketing review with a client, pricing strategies are always on the agenda (part of the Marketing Mix). This is a much bigger topic than pricing tenders and is too broad to cover properly in this post but let’s look at some of the basics:

There are three elements to a price:

  1. Direct Costs are the specific costs incurred to provide the product or service e.g. staff, materials / sub-contractors and supervision
  2. Indirect Costs include premises, management, professional fees, administration etc.
  3. Profit is the difference between the selling price and (1) & (2)
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