Fair work practices and the award of public contracts : statutory guidance

Guidance to help public bodies evaluate fair work practices, including the Living Wage, when selecting tenderers and awarding contracts.

Basis of the statutory guidance

6. Scottish Ministers have published this guidance under Section 29 of the Act. Contracting authorities must have regard to this guidance in relation to the selection of tenderers and the award of contracts for regulated procurements where the estimated value of the contract is equal to or greater than £50,000 for goods and services and £2,000,000 for works contracts and which is not otherwise exempt from regulation. We would also encourage contracting authorities to apply this guidance wherever it is appropriate to do so, for example for lower value or exempt contracts where a formal tender evaluation is to be undertaken and where fair work practices are relevant and proportionate to the quality of the contract.

7. For the purposes of this guidance:

  • 'the Living Wage' is an hourly rate set independently and updated annually by the Living Wage Foundation;
  • 'human rights standards', include not only the standards guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights through the Human Rights Act, but also those guaranteed under other international treaties that the UK has signed;

(see Annex B for fuller details)

  • 'contracting authority' has the same meaning as section 1 in the Act;
  • 'regulated procurement' has the same meaning as section 2 in the Act and
  • 'regulated contract' has the same meaning as section 3 in the Act.

8. When having regard to this statutory guidance contracting authorities must also take into account other relevant statutory guidance and consider other guidance or best practice where appropriate on the treatment of fair work practices as part of a public procurement process.

9. This document does not constitute legal advice. A contracting authority should seek its own legal advice if it is uncertain about having regard to this guidance in its own procurement exercises. This guidance applies to regulated procurements which commence on or after 1 November 2015.


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