It has been acknowledged there are a number of strategic drivers requiring a transformation in public procurement practice and procedure. This requires a shift in focus away from procedural instruction to a more commercial approach to help deliver the Programme for Government commitments through public procurement.
In recognition of this, the Procurement Board agreed to apply the themes contained within the Sourcing Playbook and Construction Playbook, published by Cabinet Office, to procurements in Northern Ireland with the aim of improving commercial focus.
As a result of this work, the Sourcing and Construction Toolkits have been developed to incorporate the best practice guidance from the Cabinet Office’s Playbooks, along with guidance developed for public procurement here.
The Toolkits are living documents which will be updated to include any relevant topics added to the Cabinet Office Playbooks.
The Toolkits are not mandated. They are a compilation of helpful guides and templates which public bodies may wish to use, as appropriate.
A proportionate approach should be taken to achieve a balance between the value of the contract and the transactional cost of applying the guidance outlined in the Toolkits.
The information set out in the Toolkits is neither legal advice nor statutory guidance and is not intended to be exhaustive. If there is any conflict between the Toolkits and Procurement Policy Notes (PPNs), the PPNs will take precedence.
Training on the different sections within the toolkits is provided through the Government Commercial College.