Get in touch
The Steps Needed to Implement Efficiency in Public Procurement

Article, Industry Insights

The Steps Needed to Implement Efficiency in Public Procurement

Driving an Environment of Public Procurement Efficiency

In the everchanging landscape of Public Procurement there is currently a drive to create a more efficient procurement environment that is focused on fairness, transparency, and compliance.  This is largely due to the new Public Procurement Act. These is also an expectation from the general public for more transparency in public procurement practices.  As we move into 2024 public sector entities are increasingly focused on streamlining their procurement processes.  This is to comply with regulations and uphold high standards of supply chain governance to ensure that they stand up to public scrutiny.

In this article we outline some key steps that can be taken to implement effective operational efficiency through public procurement strategy.  We discuss the importance of regulatory compliance, risk mitigation and the safeguarding of sensitive information.  Through these insights, public sector organisations can better understand how to optimise their procurement processes, ultimately contributing to a more ethical and responsible global market.

Implementing Regulatory Compliance Measures

To ensure regulatory compliance in the public sector several measures need to be taken:

Staying Informed and Updated

The first step in compliance is being fully aware of the existing and evolving regulatory landscape. This involves staying updated on changes in procurement laws, guidelines, and best practices. Public sector entities must regularly review and adapt their procurement policies to align with these regulations.  You can do this by setting up notifications with various news streams and publications as well as joining social media groups.  Achilles offers regular Industry Insights and newsletter updates that keep organisations in the know about legislation changes.

Training and Knowledge

Ensuring that procurement practitioners and their stakeholders are well-trained and knowledgeable is important.

You can build a culture of excellence through regular training sessions, workshops, and updates.  The Achilles Academy offers CPD accredited regulated procurement courses to help businesses understand and navigate restrictions whilst achieving high performing teams. 

people at a table having public procurement traininig

We have over 30 years experience in the provision of UK & EU Procurement legislation and practitioner knowledge training and consultancy services in the UK.

Regular Audits

Conducting regular supplier audits and reviews of procurement activities helps identify and address compliance gaps. These audits should be thorough and aim to assess the adherence to both internal policies and external legal requirements.  Achilles conducts desktop and on-site audits and worker interviews aimed at enabling you to improve supply chain performance and reduce supply chain risks.

Leveraging Technology

Within public procurement, leveraging technology can be extremely beneficial for both compliance and operational efficiency.  The MyAchilles global and multilingual platform enables public sector entities to manage international supply chain risks, and continuously improve performance​ whilst increasing transparency.

Compliance Frameworks

Establishing a clear compliance framework within the procurement process helps ensure that all decisions are made with regulatory considerations in mind.

compliance and regulation

This framework should include defined requirements and procedures for maintaining compliance. Having a structured and well-defined compliance framework means public sector organisations can address various regulatory aspects. It ensures every step of the procurement process is transparent, fair, and aligns with the latest legal standards.

Safeguarding Sensitive Information in Public Sector Procurement: Data Storage and Cyber Security

Protecting sensitive information is of utmost importance in public sector procurement. Government organisations handle a vast amount of data, including financial records, personal information, and confidential documents.

Having access to the right kind of data surrounding IT systems, data management, governance frameworks and cybersecurity is crucial when it comes to safeguarding sensitive data and mitigating the risk of cyber-attacks.  Achilles approach to cyber security and IT can support with this.

The Costs of Data Breaches

The cost of a data breach can have huge financial implications.  According the IBMS Cost of a Data breach Report 2023 each public sector data security incident costs on average $2.07M.  In 2018 the US government faced costs of $13.7B due to cyber-attacks.  As well as he financial implications there is the obvious huge negative impact in public trust.

As a BSI accredited business we protect organisations from the financial loss and reputational and compliance risk that cyber-attacks and data breaches can bring from third parties, through thorough cyber security management in your supply chain. The data we collect and verify on your suppliers gives you oversight, while our audits help you make sure every part of their operations is as secure as it should be.

The Significance of Compliance and Risk Management in Public Sector Procurement

In public sector procurement, the emphasis on compliance and risk management is important.  It ensures practices are both responsible and align with broader societal and regulatory expectations. While environmental, social, and governance (ESG) aspects have gained attention as important factors, they form part of a broader framework that prioritises stringent compliance and effective risk management.

Driving Ethical Procurement Processes through Governance: Supply Chain Due Diligence

ESG criteria have become important in shaping future procurement strategies. Environmental considerations involve choosing eco-friendly and sustainable options, while social aspects include ensuring fair labour practices and positive community impacts.  For example according to the ILO nearly 50 million people are living in modern slavery, of which almost 28 million are in forced labour. This is a clear indicator that forced labour should be on every procurement professional’s radar.  Governance standards ensure transparency and ethical decision-making, fostering public trust. By adopting thses standards, public sector entities demonstrate leadership in environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

Effective due diligence in the supply chain is about understanding and mitigating risks associated with each supplier. It is also about ensuring they align with high standards. This involves evaluating suppliers’ environmental practices, labour conditions, and governance structures. Such due diligence ensures that each link in the supply chain adheres to ethical practices. This then supports in contributing to the overall sustainability of procurement activities.

Enhancing Public Sector Procurement Efficiency in 2024 and Beyond

As we look towards 2024 the landscape of public procurement is set to evolve. There will be an increased focus on efficiency, transparency, and compliance.  The role of organisations such as us at Achilles can be a valuable asset.  When it comes to expertise surrounding supplier management, risk mitigation and supply chain transparency our expertise will provide key insights into facilitating these changes.

Looking forward, public sector procurement will play an important part in shaping a more ethical and responsible global market.  The actions and decisions made within this sector can have far reaching impacts.

Contact us today to discuss your requirement surrounding supply chain management and compliance.

Learn more about out how we can support your supply chain