I recently attended a very good seminar on the upcoming EU regulations run by the very knowledgeable Eddie Regan. Thanks to Eddie for a great coverage of all the issues. Here at QCDL we focus on helping clients develop selection and award criteria. Some of the issues are discussed below.
It is useful to note that “cheapest compliant” terminology is going to be defunct and that there is better emphasis on the use of cost (rather than price) in determining winners through a MEAT formula. Hopefully, these changes will encourage public money spend to be aimed at long term value rather than short termism. Authorities are very good at this anyway, but I have noticed a lean towards considering price rather than Whole Life Cost (WLC). Part of the challenge has been, and will remain; not only determining a sound method for considering WLC rather than price, but doing this in a way that can be shared openly with bidders at ITT/N issue time. More work for experts in this field such as Dale Shermon (from QinetiQ), I suspect.
The clarification on evaluating staff that will be employed on a contract is also very useful. We have often intervened to state that it is essential to evaluate the capabilities of the individuals in key positions where the Authority teams have had concerns about evaluating abilities at ITT time.
There is also more emphasis on Lot-based contracts in these regulations. I look forward to the challenges involved in creating criteria that allow Lots to be used more effectively. I am sure that the same techniques will be useful in creating award criteria for the new Innovation Partnership procedure, which in my opinion should allow better access for small/medium enterprises (SMEs) to contract directly to Authorities rather than being small fish in the supply chain.
The last point I would like to make is that the reworking of exemptions to the rules is most interesting. This is not my area of expertise, but it would seem that the ability of an Authority to create a mutual without having to run an open competition is a motivator to bring this directive into legislation quickly. I can only wonder why?