We have one of the largest specialist procurement teams outside London and our procurement expertise is well known.
We wrote the National Housing Federation EU Procurement Guide and subsequent NHF Guides on Procurement in Practice and Contract Management. We actively support the Procurement Lawyers Association and have participated in working parties on frameworks, contract award criteria, the 2014 Directive and Brexit. We write a number of the LexisNexis procurement materials. Our Andrew Millross delivers full day seminars for MBL on “Drafting Procurement Documents”. We have run the Housemark Procurement Clubs for some years and are regularly invited to speak at NHMF, NHF, CIH and other conferences on procurement and related topics.
We support housing providers on all aspects of procurement, including:
- providing strategic advice on policies and procedures (eg we recently wrote a number of “How to” procurement guides for one of our clients);
- reviewing template procurement documents including OJEU notices, SSQ/PAS91 PQQ documents, selection rejection letters, ITTs (including ITPNs and IPDs), evaluation documents (including panel members declarations of interest), standstill letters and Regulation 84 reports;
- advising on the commissioning decision whether to insource, outsource, share services or procure either individually or jointly and the implications of each option;
- helping with procurement strategy for individual procurements, including the payment mechanism, form of contract and procurement route;
- group structure procurement, including the Regulation 12 (Teckal) test, transferring external contracts between group members, intra group contracts and the “inward and outward facing subsidiaries” model;
- advising whether a procurement processes are needed, particularly in relation to development projects and “package deals”;
- advising on the suitability of buying club framework agreements and how to call-off contracts from them;
- running complete procurements using any of the main processes including the competitive procedure with negotiation (which we are using increasingly in place of the restricted procedure), competitive dialogue (sometimes, for larger procurements, with “hands on” presence during the dialogue and evaluation stages) and the light touch regime;
- joint procurement, including setting up framework agreements and dynamic purchasing systems;
- varying existing contracts including negotiation strategy and the advantages and disadvantages of VEAT notices; and
- bringing and defending procurement challenges.
Our team consists of 12 procurement specialists (four partners, four associates and four solicitors); nine of whom provide specific construction, maintenance and related procurement advice.
In addition, we have procurement and contract lawyers within our commercial team, alongside the whole range of specialists you would expect to see including TUPE and pensions (including LGPS), leaseholder consultation, governance, regulation, housing management (including gas access, hoarding and leaseholder issues), data protection and information, and IT.