We’re sure you’ve heard about the Levelling Up Whitepaper that was released by the Government at the beginning of February 2022, if not, below is a brief overview of what it is and what it is hoping to achieve.
The Levelling Up Whitepaper is a mission for change and equality in all regions of the country. It will allow people everywhere to live longer and more fulfilling lives whilst benefitting from rises in living standards and well-being. The paper sets out 12 missions that it will focus on, most needing to be achieved by 2030.
But what exactly does it mean for procurement? Keep reading to find out!
What Are the Missions?
In total, the Government have released 12 different missions, to be achieved by 2030, that set out what they plan to do to help the people of the UK flourish. These missions are across four broad areas:
- Boosting productivity and living standards by growing the private sector
- Spreading opportunities and improving public services
- Restoring a sense of community, local pride, and belonging
- Empowering local leaders and communities
What Does This Mean for Procurement? Social Value:
With a high focus on community, you’re likely to see an increase in Social Value weighting within the tenders you’re bidding for. This won’t just be all about your company’s environmental impact but will also be about how you give back to your local community (or the community of the area the contract is in). This could include anything from creating job opportunities within the area to how you plan to communicate with the local community throughout the contract.
You may find that these are already part of the social value questions, however, with levelling up being on the forefront of clients’ minds, it’ll become increasingly more important when answering bids.
What Does This Mean for Procurement? Business Costs:
Another impact will be your business costs. As you may know, the levelling up paper mentions paying all employees the National Living Wage as this will assist in raising the living standard throughout the country. This will need to be factored into your business costs, and it may mean increasing the costs of your products/services to cover the extra cost. Your employees will greatly appreciate the wage increase and this will also tie into your social value piece, which could be the make-or-break decision of you winning a contract!
The only downfall to this is that you may come across clients who don’t want to pay more for a service. You will need a robust understanding of your costs so that you can strike the right balance. This could mean making good bid decisions in which you start choosing those with a higher quality evaluation, rather than price, to help you manage this risk.
What Does This Mean for Procurement? Regional Spending:
One of the missions focuses on regional spending/public investment. This means that tenders are likely to be more accessible and small business-friendly to give more companies the chance to win work within their local area.
As there’s a likelihood of an increase in councils wanting to hire contractors within their local area, you could also see more tenders being released. If you’re trying to branch out to a new region you may find it a little more difficult than usual over the next few years. However, if you’re trying to establish yourself within your local area, you’re likely to find this a lot easier.
According to the whitepaper, at some point in the Spring, the Government will be releasing a second report focused on rural proofing in England. This report will set out how Government departments are working to support levelling gap in rural areas and how they are strengthening the rural economy, developing rural infrastructure, delivering rural services, and managing the natural environment.
This is a paper to keep an eye out for as it seems it will be more focused on how to develop areas, whilst also keeping them rural.
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