Case Study - Diane Beattie, The Moray Council - Council team successfully engages with local businesses

Take a look at The Moray Council logo and you can begin to understand more about this special region and its unique qualities. The logo is a visual representation of Scotland, with Moray’s position highlighted within the thistle shape, its traditional Scottish colours evoking the land and sea of the region which have played such a crucial role in influencing long-established industries in the area.

Details

Moray Council’s corporate services department has a good understanding of the local economy and its traditional sectors. In particular, the make-up of the region means that the council is not just dealing largely with SMEs, but also  micro-businesses which it endeavours to engage with for contract opportunities.

As an early adopter of PCS in 2008, the council has been able to build relationships with local suppliers and encourage closer working to maximise use of the service by businesses of all sizes. This has helped encourage a much wider awareness of the council’s £120 million annual contract opportunities.

The department has a good track record of providing support to local businesses.  Most recently, it hosted a Meet the Buyer event which saw an overwhelming turnout of over 300 businesses eager to find out more about the council, its use of PCS and PCS Tender.

Diane Beattie, payments manager who oversees a variety of functions within the department, explains the council’s procurement strategy: “PCS has been central to our procurement activities for a number of years. We have a well-established system of devolved procurement responsibility across council departments – spend below £50,000 is handled by individual departments with support from procurement, usually in the form of a Quick Quote, for anything above £50,000 we would carry out a full tender exercise through procurement.

“Our recent Meet the Buyer event served to create a better understanding of how the council conducts its procurement and explain more about the PCS service. We encourage suppliers to register on PCS and maintain their Supplier Finder profiles so that they can be easily found by the council when it needs to engage with local businesses. In particular, the event helped us to explain more about PCS-Tender which we now use exclusively for contracts above £50,000.

“As with any new development, there is a bit of work to be done to not only familiarise ourselves internally with the eTendering system, but also communicate with suppliers about how it works and what the benefits are for them.

“We have been incredibly lucky with the support we get from Scottish Procurement’s Capability Development. Our local contact, Linda Davidson, has been invaluable to us and has made a significant difference in our adoption of PCS-Tender and our ability to share information with local businesses.”