Doing business with the council

We want to make it as simple as possible for you to do business with us

This section of the website is for existing suppliers of goods, services and works and those who wish to become suppliers.

"The council has long recognised the contribution of small businesses and third sector organisations to our thriving local economy and we are committed to working with them and helping them to grow. This commitment is demonstrated by the new procurement procedures we have put in place to enable local companies, small businesses and social enterprise to tender effectively for our contracts. By signing the National Suppliers' Charter we are reaffirming our commitment and pledging our continued support for small businesses and third sector organisations in North Lanarkshire."

Councillor Jim McCabe
Leader of North Lanarkshire Council

We also support the national supplier development program and would encourage any company that is interested in tendering for public sector contracts to visit and register with the Supplier Development Programme.

The first step in supplying to us and the wider Scottish public sector is to register with the Public Contracts Scotland website (PCS) and the Public Contracts Scotland Tender website (PCST).

Once you complete the tendering process we trust you will find us a good partner to do business with.

Our Asset & Procurement Solutions, Procurement and Support Team (P&ST) work with the council's procuring service areas to help develop contracts and procedures which achieve best value.

Our useful links and documents page contains links to local and national procurement websites and council policies and procedures which you may find useful to know.

Frequently asked questions

Public sector procurement is often seen as complex, so we've published answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about each of the topics listed below:

  • The procurement process
  • Tenders
  • Contracts
  • Electronic procurement
  • European Union (EU) Directives
  • No purchase order, no pay

How the system works

Most council contract opportunities advertised electronically using one of the following tender procedures:

  • Open
  • Restricted

The open tender procedure is a single-stage procedure where the selection and award stage are undertaken consecutively. Tender documents are provided to all suppliers who respond to an advert.

The restricted tender procedure is a two-stage process. At stage one, the selection stage, all suppliers who respond to an advert are asked to complete selection stage documentation (ESPDS). This is followed by stage two, the invitation to tender (ITT), and only those suppliers selected as a result of the ESPDS will be issued with the ITT.

Depending upon individual circumstances we might advertise electronically using one of the following tender procedures:

  • Negotiated
  • Competitive dialogue

The negotiated procedure involves approaching one or more suppliers and negotiating the terms of the contract with them. There are strict rules concerning its use and very few contracts qualify for this procedure. The type of circumstances where this procedure would be used include cases of urgency, technical, artistic or copyright reasons and when we receive no replies to an open or restricted tender.

The competitive dialogue procedure would normally be appropriate only in circumstances where the council has a requirement but does not know in advance what the best technical, legal or financial solution is for meeting that requirement.

How to register and bid

Register your details on PCS - we use this website as our main reference point when conducting market research and advertising contract opportunities.

1. Monitor PCS regularly for any relevant tender opportunities. (PCS is also available as an iPhone app, and can be viewed on YouTube, flickr, and followed on twitter. Links to these are available on the Public Contracts Scotland home page).

2. To register your interest to participate in any tender opportunity, follow the instructions on PCS.

3. The following documents will then be made available to download and/or complete electronically via PCS or PCST and/or sent to you:

  • a selection stage qualification document (ESPDS) (restricted tender procedure only)
  • the invitation to tender document (ITT) including instructions to bidders, contract terms and conditions, a specification, a questionnaire and offer sections.

To make sure your bid is considered, you must:

  • provide all the information requested;
  • answer all questions accurately;
  • provide a response in the requested format; and
  • return the documentation by the specified closing date.

Returned tenders will be assessed against the published evaluation criteria. Evaluation will focus on how the bidder proposes to deliver the service or goods in relation to cost, service and quality. The balance between quality and price will be determined by the services or goods to be procured. In most cases, our contracts will be awarded on the basis of the most economically advantageous offer received.

Contract awards

We have a legal requirement to comply with the European Union (EU) procurement directives and the Procurement Reform (Scotalnd) Act 2014, which govern the way in which public sector procurement is conducted for contracts above specified thresholds and these govern the way in which contracts are awarded, based on the value of the contract.

Where contracts are valued above the EU thresholds, all unsuccessful bidders will be notified of the outcome and the successful bidder will be also be notified that the contract will be awarded to them, subject to there being no challenge to the award decision during the mandatory standstill period of 10 days.

A to Z of services