Trading with us

We In-Tend to give Businesses Opportunities e-fficiently

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Procurement & Business Services is your first point of contact for doing business with the university. Please select the links below for more information.

The University of Greenwich is a major modern UK university serving over 20,000 students covering a range of subject areas. Its three campuses extend from Maritime Greenwich to Medway, serving South East London, Kent Thames-side and West Kent.

The university aims to combine the best of the "old" and "new" university traditions, combining strong regional links and a mission for access and lifelong learning with research excellence and an international role.

We cover Purchasing and Contracts, Print and Reprographics services to all academic and support staff in Schools, Offices, Institutes and Departments of the University. The University spends £30 million on non-pay requirements each year.

Suppliers meeting the criteria for selection onto a Select List of Tenderer's following an advertisement in the local press, trade journal the Official Journal of the European Communities, is eligible to be invited to tender via the electronic In-Tend system for supplies, services or works contracts.

The Tendering Procedure involves the provision of Tender Documents for completion by firms, which include the following sections:

  • Letter of Invitation to Tender
  • PQQ
  • Preambles and Tender Return Instruction
  • Form of Tender
  • Conditions of Contract and Special Conditions
  • Requirement Specification
  • Schedules/Bills of Quantities
  • Supplementary Information
  • Instructions for Tendering

Tenders are then submitted electronically via In-Tend for opening, detailed analysis and selection of short-listed firms who are invited to make a presentation to a Tender Evaluation Team. The TET comprises of the clients/users, and a representative of Procurement & Business Services. Successful and unsuccessful tenderer's are informed of the result of the tender process and generally the total tender price is disclosed, subject to good practice whilst complying with legislative provisions.

On acceptance of the tender and issue of a Purchase Order by the University, the successful supplier is required to sign a contract document and provide an excellent service, which will be monitored jointly by the client and Procurement & Business Services.

Our vision

Our Procurement Vision is expressed in our "University Procurement Strategy and Action Plan as follows:

"Working collaboratively with clients, providers and public bodies to implement efficient and cost effective procurement practices that achieve Value for Money expended on Supplies, Services and Works and support the University's Strategic Objectives including corporate social responsibilities".

Our policy

The procedure adopted to purchase requirements is determined by the level of aggregate expenditure over the period of a contract, the nature of the market segment, and the complexity of the requirement. The aim is to secure the most competitive price, whilst ensuring that all performance targets, realistic expectations and client satisfaction with the speed of acquisition and delivery are met; the process must be efficient and cost-effective and the quality of the supplier is crucial to meeting that objective.

Our strategy

Our Procurement Strategy and Action Plan approved by the Audit Committee, which is aligned to the University's Strategic Objectives and Higher Education (HE) sector arrangements, involves seven Strategic Procurement Objectives summarised as follows:

  • Good management practice, procedures and systems.
  • Long term commitment to co-ordinated and collaborative procurement.
  • Development of Procurement knowledge, skills and expertise.
  • Utilisation of cost-effective Consortia, National Contract, specialist procurement expertise.
  • Development of a coordinated and effective procurement structure.
  • Use of management information and performance measurement systems.
  • Incorporation of corporate social responsibilities in Procurement arrangements.

The Procurement Team is responsible for the co-ordination and management of the University's purchasing activities covering supplies, services and works contracts. It also advises clients on purchasing strategies and practices to achieve Value for Money. The Business Services Team covering Print and Reprographics play a key role in ensuring that an efficient support service is provided to clients in delivering their activities in the most cost-effective manner.

Our Background

We seek to comply with the European Commission recommendation in the Consolidated Procurement Directive that Awarding Authorities provide their purchasing and procurement information via a Buyer Profile. By publishing this information suppliers are allowed the opportunity to identify and express an interest in current and future tenders, and view which suppliers have already been awarded contracts for the range of supplies, services and works purchased by the University.

Our Buyer Profile

Our Buyer Profile provides contact details and future, outlines of our Procurement Policy, information on purchase plans, current and past contracts in a freely accessible on the University's web site. By posting and communicating this procurement information, suppliers and contractors are provided the opportunity to access Procurement Policy and Procedures, current and past contract awards and future tenders to be undertaken by Procurement & Business Services.

Purchase Plans

Information on forthcoming contracts will be advertised via In-Tend.

Other Information

Our web site includes an e-Approved List, e-tendering and Contract Management facility at no cost via our In-Tend, a system that is being used in a phased manner by both Procurement & Business Services buyers and potential suppliers, thus improving efficiency in the registration, Approved List admission and the tendering process.

Provided suppliers maintain their information within the In-Tend database, the facility removes the need to re-submit additional pre-qualification information for every tender invitation. In-Tend also allows us to create Preferred Lists of Suppliers and Contractors who will be invited to tender for specific contracts.

Enterprises qualify as micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) if they fulfill the criteria laid down in the Recommendation which are summarized in the table below. In addition to the staff headcount ceiling, an enterprise qualifies as an SME if it meets either the turnover ceiling or the balance sheet ceiling, but not necessarily both.

Enterprise category

Headcount

Turnover

(or) Balance sheet total

Large Organisation
 250+ employees
 € 50 million +
 € 43 million +
Medium-sized
< 250
< € 50 million
< € 43 million
Small
< 50
< € 10 million
< € 10 million
Micro
< 10
< € 2 million
< € 2 million

The university aims to support our Local and Small Medium Enterprises (SME). 

The university aims to be an Equal Opportunity Buyer to find out more visit our Equality in Purchasing Cycle and our Equality in Purchasing Process

The attention of Tenderer's is drawn to the following statement on the University's obligation regarding disclosure of information under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

  1. The University undertakes to use its best endeavours to hold confidential any information provided by Tenderer's in response to an Invitation to Tender, subject to the University's obligations under law regarding disclosure.
  2. The Freedom of Information Act 2000 applied to the University and all its wholly owned subsidiary companies from 1st January 2005. From that date any individual can request access to any records held, subject to the various exemptions provisions in the Act.
  3. Tenderer's who wish that any of the information supplied in the Tender should not be disclosed, should, when providing the information, identify if any of the information supplied in response to an Invitation to Tender is confidential or commercially sensitive and should not be disclosed in response to a request for information under the aforementioned Act. The tenderer should state why they consider the information to be confidential or commercially sensitive. The onus is on the Tenderer to identify sensitive areas to the University in the tender submission.
  4. Please note that the University is not under any obligation to refuse to release any information that is marked confidential, and it is up to the University to judge whether exemptions apply and whether information should be released. Please also note that in the event that no information is identified as confidential or commercially sensitive, then it is likely to be released in response to a request under the Act. It will be the policy of the University to consult with relevant parties prior to making a decision under the Act, where possible. The University will in all instances be bound by the findings of the Information Commissioner with regard to any requests under the Act.

We are aiming to become more a sustainable buyer thereby reducing the impact on our planets resources, and of course we can not do this without your help. Please see the below links for more information.

How Does Sustainable Procurement Affect You?

All suppliers and contractors should be committed to assisting the university and supporting our Sustainability Policy and Sustainable Procurement Policy.

These policies affect suppliers and contractors in numerous ways. Key implications affecting businesses include:

  • demand for sustainable supplies and services;
  • importance of environmental management systems;
  • whole life costing.

Sustainable supplies and services

The University of Greenwich, fellow HEIs and the wider public sector all have environmental policies and targets. Procurement plays a big part within this and as a result, organisations are increasingly requiring more sustainable supplies and services.

At the University of Greenwich, we are working to embed the 'Government Buying Standards' into our specifications. The Standards have been developed by Defra and while they are mandatory for central Government bodies they are considered best practice for the wider public sector too. The specifications cover a large range of supplies including electronics, IT and building and construction materials. By supplying products that meet these standards, businesses will place themselves in a good position to continue supplying the public sector in the future.gov-buying-standards

Other specifications to be aware of include:

Environmental management

An environmental management system (EMS) allows businesses to measure improve and their environmental impacts. At the University of Greenwich, we are asking suppliers and prospective suppliers to provide us with information about any EMS they have as this confirms that they are committed to continual sustainability improvement.

The two most common environmental management system certification programmes are:

SMEs: If you work for a small or medium sized business (SME) in the London area, free support is available from Global Action Plan, a climate change charity helping companies and individuals to make environmental and financial savings. This support can assist smaller businesses in measuring their environmental impact and identify areas for cost savings. Reductions are also available on their EMS training. 

The University of Greenwich currently holds EcoCampus Silver certification and we are working towards Gold. EcoCampus is closely aligned with ISO14001 and is designed for the higher education (HE) sector.

Whole life costing

Whole life costing involves consideration of the full cost of supplies, services and works to an organisation over their lifetime. As well as acquisition costs this includes energy costs, disposal costs. Procurement & Business Services at the University of Greenwich are currently embedding this approach within our tender process. National and regional purchasing consortia are also adopting this approach when undertaking large tenders. It is thus important for businesses to be supplying energy efficient, sustainable options.

The life cycle impacts of supplies extend far beyond just their cost to the university however. The university's purchasing power has an effect not just on the product use stage, but also throughout the entirety of the product life cycle. On key commodity groups, we will be working with suppliers and contractors to encourage lower life cycle impacts. Environmental management systems and supply chain management are important here.

whole-life-cost

Sustainable Policy

Sustainable procurement is a process whereby organisations meet their needs for goods, services, works and utilities in a way that achieves value for money on a whole life basis in terms of generating benefits not only to the organisation but also to society and the economy, whilst minimising damage to the environment

The University of Greenwich is committed to improving the sustainability of its procurement. Ensuring a successful shift to more sustainable procurement is the responsibility of all users and procurers across the University. The Sustainable Procurement Policy & Strategy 2011 - 2014 has been developed to highlight the University's commitment and to inform and encourage all interested stakeholders including staff, students, suppliers and prospective suppliers.

Any questions or comments regarding sustainable procurement please contact us.

Resources and Links

We have introduced a more efficient and cost effective processes by adopting a range of electronic systems such as:-

In-Tend - Electronic Approved List, e-Tendering and Contract Management process, where we can adopt suppliers, publish tender projects and award contracts in an efficient and cost-effective manner. For more information on In-Tend you are invited to visit our Guide to the e-Tendering System.

Parabilis/e-Marketplace - Electronic ordering and invoicing system which allows all of the University's Faculties and Directorates to order efficiently from our Approved Suppliers, Contractors and Consultants.

Constructionline - Contractor pre-qualification Scheme which complies with PAS 91 and reduces the need for duplicated analysis.

Electronic Signing

Digital signatures can be used to sign documents securely to find out more go to our Creating Digital Signatures Document.

The University spends an estimated £35 million on Supplies and Services in addition to special capital projects.  In order to secure and sustain value for money we pursue a Collaborative Procurement strategy involving participation in some consortia and framework agreements that are in the public sector domain.

If you are a Contracted Supplier or Service Provider with a Consortia, do let us know and you may be admitted onto our Preferred Suppliers List without having to complete the Approved List process.

You only need to complete our Initial Registration Request Form (IRRF1) (Outlook Template) or alternatively supply to approvedlist your basic company details, i.e.

  • Registered Company Name.
  • Registered Number.
  • Registered Address.
  • General Contact Information.
  • Contact Details (e-mail and telephone numbers) for two persons.
  • Your Business Types - The Goods/Services you provide as per the UNSPSC Coding Structure.

The University spends an estimated £4 million on minor and maintenance Works, excluding Capital projects which can be several million.

We are currently collaborating with Constructionline the UK's largest register for pre-qualified contractors and consultants which forms the basis of our accredited supply base for Works and construction-related procurement. Our collaboration with Constructionline has streamlined the process of selecting suitable contractors through integration with In-tend, leading to a more efficient registration process.

You only need to complete our Initial Registration Request Form (IRRF1)  (Outlook Template) or alternatively supply to approvedlist your basic company details, i.e.

  • Registered Company Name
  • Registered Number
  • Registered Address
  • General Contact Information
  • Contact Details (e-mail and telephone numbers) for Two persons
  • Your Business Types - The works/services you provide.

UNSPSC Coding Structure - We use selected business categories from the UNSPC Code list; if you feel that the codes on our system do not represent your business please search the list & send your required codes to approvedlist@gre.ac.uk.

If you are not on Constructionline, you are strongly advised to register now and thereby avoid duplication of effort as well as improve your opportunities of securing contracts.

Once you have completed the steps of being registered on our e-Tendering system In-Tend you are not required to do anything except keep your basic details updated, unless you are supplying the university with goods/services which amount to £50,000 plus per Annam.

or

You have "Expressed an Interest" in a Projects which are "Open" and not restricted to pre-selected suppliers via In-Tend or you have received a notification via email that a Project has been published to the In-Tend system.

The process will then be as follows:-

  1. Complete the Supplier Details on the In-Tend system, the following company information maybe requested-
    • Financial (Audited Accounts/Credit Check)
    • Insurances (Public/Employers Liability)
    • Policies (Health & Safety/Equal Opportunities/Environmental)
    • References (Client/Bank)
    • Accreditation's applicable to your business.
  2. Upload the documents to your Document Storage area of In-Tend a Guide to In-Tend is available to aid you in use of In-Tend.
  3. Complete the tender documents which are down-loadable via In-Tend & Submit them via "My Tenders".
  4. If you are unsuccessful a notice will be sent informing you or if you are successful you will receive an Award notice & Articles of Agreement/Contract to be completed & returned to us via In-Tend.
  5. A purchase order will be issued via the Parabilis system.

On our In-Tend system, a supplier's status is categorised using on of the following coloured flags:-

green-flag Green - Approved or Constructionline accredited.

amber-flag Amber - Approved to provide business under £50,000pa or process commenced but incomplete and require supporting documents or updates, if exceeding the financial limit/tendering/contracted.

gold-flag Gold - SME's (Small and Medium Sized Enterprises including local suppliers meeting specific needs in expenditure levels below £10,000pa and not yet required to complete the full Approved List process.

No Flag -  Approved List documents not submitted, assessment process pending.

red-flag Red - Suppliers who are not to be used as a result of poor service performance or unresolved issues.

Suppliers will receive automatic notices of expired documents and changes in status via In-Tend.

Priority will be given to suppliers with a Green status when selecting firms for competitive quotations by Faculties and Directorates and tenders by Procurement & Business Services (over £50,000).

Suppliers with Amber status may be invited to submit quotations and tenders, subject to outstanding information Being submitted to Procurement & Business Services.

SME's will be eligible to be selected for invitations to submit quotations using the electronic "Quick Quotes" system operated by Procurement & Business Services which can be rolled-out to Faculties and Directorates.

How "Quick Quotes" Works

We are currently implementing and rolling out the use of "Quick Quotes" through our In-Tend System.

University staff will be able to contact you directly to request quotations via In-Tend for the provision of goods/services/works below £50,000. This will enhance efficiency in transacting business between you and the university.

You must ensure that all of your contact details are kept updated on the In-Tend system as "Quick Quotes" requests are sent out via email notification and you will generally have a short return period depending on the urgency of the requirement.

The procedure to submit your "Quick Quote" proposal is the same as the tender return procedure so please see our Guide to In-Tend for more information.