Scottish Government procurement annual report: 2020

Report on the procurement activity of the Scottish Government from April 2019 to March 2020

4. Contracting activity and how our procurement activity contributes to sustainable and inclusive economic growth

4.1 Summary of regulated procurements completed between April 2019 - March 2020

We continue to recognise the power of procurement and our contracts continue to deliver a wide range of economic, social and environmental benefits which are good for businesses, people and communities. 

During the reporting period, we managed 409 live contracts worth £6.4 billion, awarded 169 new contracts regulated by the Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act 2014 with a total value of just under £1.9 billion. 

Fair Work criteria are a standard consideration for our procurements, and so our contracts continue to make a positive contribution to achieving good and sustainable employment for people working on public contracts. Over 90% of our current suppliers have committed to paying at least the Real Living Wage. 

During the reporting period, our contracts generated savings of £160 million. 

Details of our contract awards are available on the Public Contracts Scotland website. Our website contains more information on our current collaborative agreements.

Spend summary

The table below shows spend on collaborative frameworks (established by Scottish Ministers, but available to all Scottish public sector bodies) and contracts used by core Scottish Government organisations.

Category Spend (£m) Saving (£m) Savings (%)
Collaborative (National and Central Government sectoral framework contracts) £985 £136 14%
Scottish Government contracts  £369 £24 6.5%
Total £1,354 £160 11.8%

While not included in figures elsewhere in this report, our Central Government Procurement Shared Services (CGPSS) team awarded 21 regulated contracts worth a total of £5.9 million on behalf of other public bodies. 33% of these were awarded to SMEs. 

These contracts were placed on behalf of other central government bodies separate to the Scottish Government and, if applicable, will be reported in the respective organisations’ Annual Procurement Report. 

4.2. Review of whether our procurements kept to our Procurement Strategy published on 29 March 2018 

Our Procurement Strategy sets out how we plan to carry out our regulated procurement exercises. This report reflects on whether those procurements complied with that strategy during the period April 2019 to March 2020.

As was the case last year, during that period, all of the regulated contracts have been awarded in a way which meets the policies and principles set out in the strategy, and throughout this report we explain how this has been achieved. 

We continue to recognise the importance of those responsible for procurement having an appropriate level of delegated authority. Key to this is ensuring that those involved in awarding and managing contracts have the professional skills, knowledge, qualifications and experience to do so and that we continue to invest in their skills and capability development through our Procurement Competency Framework

Our scheme of ‘delegated purchasing authority’, means that no member of staff is authorised to enter into a contract on behalf of Scottish Ministers without written delegated authority to do so from our Director of Procurement. That delegated authority is only given to those who can demonstrate they possess the appropriate skills, competencies and knowledge of our procurement policies and of legal obligations.

Our programme to embed and grow commercial capability continued, targeting all Scottish Government civil servants at awareness, practitioner and leadership level, to ensure they understand and can contribute to our wider commercial and sustainability ambition. 

4.3. Summary of regulated procurements in the next two financial years

In the next two years, we anticipate starting around 145 procurements worth a total of around £3.3 billion. A full list of known regulated procurements is in Annex A 

Also in the next two years, we expect that:

  • Over 100 contracts will be awarded for the sole use of the Scottish Government, with an approximate value of £900 million. 
  • 18 contracts worth around £78 million will be awarded in relation to the specific services required to support the additional powers devolved to the Scottish Government by the Scotland Act 2016.
  • Five collaborative contracts will be awarded on behalf of Scottish public bodies, with an approximate value of £230 million.



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