Procurement of care and support services: best practice guidance - updated June 2021

Best practice guidance for public bodies on procurement of care and support services. Originally published in March 2016, it has been updated to reflect changes that have occurred as a result of the UK's exit from the EU and the end of the Transition Period.

Annex 5: Summary of Key Actions Required by a Public Body to Implement the Guidance

A public body should ensure that activity to procure care and support services is fully assessed as part of its procurement capability (PCIP) assessments which are returned to the Scottish Government. In particular, it should focus on the key actions described below:

1. Local strategies, policies and financial regulations/standing orders

  • a public body should have Strategic Commissioning Plans for all main care groups which are supported by delivery plans and should work progressively towards an overarching commissioning strategy
  • a public body should have written and approved policies which reflect developments in Self-Directed Support and the Key Considerations in this guidance
  • a public body should review its financial regulations and standing orders to ensure that it makes appropriate provision for the procurement of care and support services

2. Leadership and governance

  • a public body's local financial regulations and standing orders should describe the governance arrangements for the social care procurement function and individual procurement exercises.
  • these arrangements should articulate roles and responsibilities and ensure clear leadership and accountability
  • a public body should also outline the process for decisions to be approved by the appropriate decision-making forum

3. Knowledge and skills

  • a public body should ensure that staff involved in the procurement of care and support services receive the training required to develop and maintain their knowledge and skills

4. Defining the requirement and securing services

  • a public body should produce a procurement plan for every procurement exercise
  • a public body should ensure that it undertakes all consultation, where appropriate, with people who use services and their carers, service providers and trade unions

5. Contract and relationship management

  • a public body should ensure that suitable contracts are in place with all providers delivering care and support services
  • every contract for care and support services should be managed by a nominated contract management officer
  • managing the relationship with service providers should be the responsibility of a nominated member of staff



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