The Scottish Government Procurement Strategy April 2024 – March 2028

The Scottish Government's procurement strategy describes how we plan to carry out our regulated procurements for the next four years.

Appendix 2 – Tools, Systems and Guidance

Policy and Standards

Procurement Policy Manual

Provides guidance on the procurement policies that apply to Scottish Government procurement activity and highlights some key legal obligations and considerations.

Procurement Policy Handbook

Provides guidance on the rules and policies that apply to the procurement activities of public bodies in Scotland and highlights some key legal obligations.

Sustainable Procurement Tools

The tools are designed to help public bodies optimise the economic, social and environmental outcomes of their procurement activity, and demonstrate compliance with the Sustainable Procurement Duty. They include the:

  • Flexible Framework - enables the assessment of current level of performance, and the actions required to embed good procurement practice in a public body to realise intended sustainable outcomes;
  • Prioritisation methodology – helps to identify risks and opportunities associated with planned procurement activity, and with planning resource allocation to address these. This tool can be used at an organisational and at a category level; and
  • Sustainability Test and Life Cycle Impact Map – helps to identify risks and opportunities at an individual procurement level, and where to address these in the procurement process.

An extensive suite of supporting guidance is available to help public bodies achieve positive economic, social and environmental outcomes. The tools and guidance are reviewed on an ongoing basis, and additional resources such as eLearning and sustainable procurement case studies, will continue to be added over time.

Tools and guidance

Procurement Journey

Provides an online source of procurement guidance and documentation for the Scottish public sector. Its purpose is to communicate and drive best practice and compliance throughout the Scottish public sector from simple purchases to complex procurement exercises. The Procurement Journey is kept up-to-date to reflect current legislation and policy.

The Client Guide to Construction Projects

Provides guidance to assist public bodies to manage and procure construction projects. It consists of three handbooks:

1. Project initiation and business case handbook;

2. Construction procurement handbook; and

3. Construction phase handbook.

Supplier Journey

Provides online guidance to suppliers to make it easier for them to bid for public goods and services.

Public Contracts Scotland (PCS)

A ‘one-stop-shop’ for suppliers looking for Scottish public sector contract opportunities. PCS has enabled stronger communication links between buyers and suppliers. The use of PCS by Scottish public bodies to advertise their regulated contract opportunities is mandatory.


The national e-tendering service that allows suppliers to submit tenders for a public contract in electronic format. It also enables public bodies to manage their contracts and suppliers electronically.

The Single Procurement Document (SPD)

Must be used in Scotland for procurements regulated under the Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015 and is recommended for all other regulated procurements. The SPD helps reduce the administrative burden on bidders and removes some of the barriers to participation in public procurements, especially for SMEs. It allows buyers to identify suitably qualified and experienced bidders and replaces the requirement for suppliers to provide up-front evidence or certificates by allowing them to self-declare that they meet the relevant criteria. Bidders are also able to store and reuse their information for future use.


The Scottish Procurement Information Hub

A sophisticated spend analysis tool that provides reporting capability on procurement spend by key public bodies which enables them to see their spend, identify who their key suppliers are, highlight spend with SMEs and local suppliers and identify potential collaborative opportunities.


Automates the purchase to pay process from creating shopping baskets, raising orders and presenting valid invoices for payment. It also embeds standard and consistent business workflows and audited approval processes to ensure compliance with procurement and finance guidelines.

PECOS e-Invoicing

Enables the receipt of electronic invoices from suppliers which are validated and then automatically passed to public bodies for matching and payment in finance systems.

PECOS Catalogue Management

Manages the validation and approval of catalogues that are made available as a result of national, sectoral or local contracts. It allows catalogues to be published in a number of formats for upload into purchase to pay systems that are in use across the Scottish public sector.

PECOS Gateway

Enables 3rd party systems to access catalogue content and create a shopping basket that is then returned to that 3rd party system for PO creation, approval and transmission.

Scotland Innovates

Provides potential suppliers with information, guidance and support on how to develop ideas and innovations into products and technologies that may be of use in the provision of public services in Scotland. Provides a landing zone for current and potential suppliers looking to promote new ideas for innovative products or services and provides strong links to key stakeholder groups, Innovation Leads, the Scottish Government Chief Science Office and Economy Directorate.


The Procurement and Commercial Improvement Programme (PCIP)

This continuous improvement programme focuses on the culture, scope and approach of the public body which manages, supports and enables procurement activity from the identification of a need through to contract delivery. It is based around set questions and other evaluation methods with a detailed examination of activities such as contract management, ensuring that procurements are conducted sustainably, and some other indirect areas such as continuous professional development. Public bodies can then, based on the outcome of the assessment, develop an action plan to achieve maximum value for money and improve their ability when buying goods, services and works. The PCIP assessment tool and process are regularly reviewed to ensure it continues to reflect current legislation and best practice.



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