Free Course to Help Smaller Firms Bid for Government Contracts
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Issued on 25 January 2010
A free online public procurement course designed to help smaller firms bid
for the £220 billion of public sector contracts awarded each year was today
launched jointly by Small Business Minister Lord Davies and the Chief Secretary
to the Treasury Liam Byrne.
The course, ‘Winning the Contract’, shows participants how to identify
business opportunities to supply goods and services to the public sector,
explains the public procurement process, and demonstrates how to submit tenders.
It has helpful hints and tips to guide and inform businesses on the bidding
process, and where to find public sector contract opportunities.
Trade, Investment and Small Business Minister Lord Davies said:
“Small and medium-sized businesses already sell their goods and services to
the public sector, but many more could do so. Opening up public sector
procurement to a wider range of suppliers provides new opportunities for small
businesses as the UK economy heads towards growth.”
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liam Bryne, MP said:
"Small and medium-sized businesses are the engine-room of our economy. We
want them to harness the spending power of government to grow their businesses
and create jobs. This new free course will help those businesses to compete
effectively for government contracts, locking in the recovery and strengthening
businesses throughout the country."
Winning the Contract is a nationally available online training course which
all businesses, regardless of size and sector, can access free of charge. It is
part of a series of joint initiatives by the Office of Government Commerce and
Department for Business, Innovation and Skills aimed at making the procurement
market clearer and simpler.
1. Businesses can register to access the ‘Winning the Contract’ course by
clicking through to learndirect on the Business Link website at
www.businesslink.gov.uk/procurement . The course, developed by Government
and hosted by learndirect, takes a maximum of 3 to 4 hours and can be taken
section by section as time allows.
2. The e-learning tool was originally launched in 2007 and previously cost
£49.99. Following an evaluation early last year, the course has been radically
refreshed and built upon to comprehensively cover all aspects of the procurement
process. Government has removed the fee to ensure accessibility for all
3. The Glover Review was launched in the Budget 2008, to look at the barriers
faced by SMEs when competing for public sector contracts. The report made 12
recommendations aimed at making the procurement process more transparent, simple
and strategic. Government accepted all 12 recommendations and implementation
work began immediately through the OGC/BIS Access for All programme. See
Accelerating the SME Economic Engine
4. The Access for All programme is part of a wider programme to harness the
power of public procurement in support of growth through three specific agendas
of supporting small and medium-sized enterprises; encouraging apprenticeships,
training and youth employment; and reducing carbon emissions. For more
information see the Policy Through Procurement action plan on the OGC website
5. There are an estimated 4.8 million small and medium enterprises in the UK
(these make up 99.9 per cent of all businesses, contribute 60 percent of private
sector employment, and 50 per cent of turnover).
Department for Business, Innovation & Skills
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2010-01-26 11:18:30 in Business Articles