Government Launches New Package Of Measures Designed To Promote a Healthy & Diverse Marketplace Of Companies Bidding for Government Contracts
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office David Lidington MP delivered a speech setting out the Government’s commitment to the private and voluntary sector delivery of public services on 25 June.
Mr Lidington highlighted the Government’s commitment to the private sector and highlighted the need to build a “diverse, vibrant marketplace of different suppliers” in which “the wider social benefits matter and are recognised.”
The Minister also announced that the Government plan to extend the requirements of the Social Value Act in central government to ensure all major procurements explicitly evaluate social value where appropriate, rather than just ‘consider’ it.
He said the Government will by doing so “ensure that contracts are awarded on the basis of more than just value for money – but a company’s values too, so that their actions in society are rightly recognised and rewarded”, and moreover that the Government will challenge its major suppliers to “do better on equality and diversity.”
As part of this, the Minister affirmed the Government’s intention that in future its biggest suppliers will publish data and provide action plans for how they intend to address key social issues and disparities, such as gender pay, ethnic minority representation, and what they are doing to tackle modern slavery.
Mr Lidington also announced further measures which will include requiring key suppliers to develop ‘living wills’ which will allow contingency plans to be rapidly put into place if needed, increased transparency for major contracts by publishing key performance indicators, improved training for government procurers, and enhanced measures to protect suppliers from cyber attacks.
CECA members can read our briefing on the 2015 Modern Slavery Act (titled ‘Transparency in Supply Chains’) in the members’ area, can read about CECA’s campaign to increase diversity in our industry here, and can watch a short film about CECA’s 2018 diversity awards here. CECA will be monitoring the changes the Government makes and will keep members informed of developments.