Do Business with the Council
Procurement is the process we use to acquire supplies, services and works. We have to adhere to the European Union (EU) Public Procurement Directives and our own Contracts Procedure Rules - which are laid out in our constitution [258kb]- to ensure contracting opportunities are open to appropriate competition and ensure transparency due to the large amount spent by public bodies.
We currently spend over £135 million per year with more than 8,000 external suppliers providing a wide range of goods, works and services. We procure everything from office supplies, social care services, through to vehicles. You can see our Commissioning and Procurement Strategy for more information, or download our top tips on how to tender [58kb]document.
We currently advertise tenders and contracting opportunities through:
- The South East Business Portal (SEBP)website
- TED: Tenders Electronic Daily(when European Contract Directives apply to a contract)
- Local newspapers or business journals, if appropriate
- Our website.
The South East Business Portal (SEBP)offers information about existing contracts and upcoming opportunities across 74 Councils and 9 Fire and Rescue Services across the South East. It is free to register and once registered you will get an automatic e-mail alert every time an opportunity suitable for your business is advertised by any council in the South East region.
Download our booklet on how to do business with the Council [332kb]to see our purchasing procedures and the things you need to consider when doing business with us.
For specific contracts you should follow the guidance given in the published Contract Notice or advertisement and apply to the nominated officer or department.
The Government has launched an online procurement course, called Winning the Contract.This is a free resource to help businesses - in particular small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) - learn about public procurement and how to bid for public sector contracts. It shows you how to identify business opportunities, explains the procurement process and how to submit tenders.
Use of Constructionline
Reading Borough Council (RBC) has recently reviewed the procurement route it utilises to select contractors for tendering opportunities for sub-OJEU building works and civil engineering projects.
The Council hereby notifies all potential and existing building and civil engineering contractors that with effect from 1 April 2015 this authority will commence using the pre-qualification portal Constructionline to manage the stage 1 assessment process for the selection of contractors for works and services valued below OJEU thresholds in respect of the following areas of work:
- Property Services
- Highways & Civil Engineering.
In order to be considered for tendering opportunities relative to these two areas of work contractors wishing to carry out work on behalf of Reading Borough Council must therefore be members of Constructionline.
To apply for membership of Constructionline please contact the Support Team on telephone number 0844 892 0313, or to sign-up go to www.constructionline.co.uk/signup website. If contractors are already registered on Constructionline you are not required to re-register.
If you require more information on the Constructionline scheme or need assistance with your application, please contact the Business Development Manager at Constructionline, Andrew Turner on 07860 949906 or by e-mail at: If you require more information on the Constructionline scheme or need assistance with your application, please contact the Business Development Manager at Constructionline, Andrew Turner on 07860 949906 or by e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why use Constructionline?
By using Constructionline the authority knows that the stage 1 vetting process has been completed on our behalf saving us both time and effort; the same principle also applies to contractors.
By registering on Constructionline contractors will not have to submit the same details again and again each time they submit bids for a new piece of work. All that is required is one initial set up on Constructionline providing your company's details and then ensuring they remain fully up to date for organisations such as RBC to access. This arrangement can be of considerable benefit for small businesses, and it can also make it easier for them to do business with other councils and public sector bodies who also use Constructionline as a procurement route.
It is our intention to start using an electronic (e-Tendering) system called In-tend with effect from April 2015, in addition to using the South East Business Portal and Contracts Finder for advertising tenders and contracting opportunities.
What does this mean for Suppliers?
All current and potential suppliers will be required to register on the e-Tendering Portal, In-tend, in order to participate in current and future contracting opportunities. This will allow the Council to send direct communications to registered suppliers of any new opportunities.
What do Suppliers need to do to register?
You can register online.
You will then need to complete a short online form to register:
- your company's details
- categorising your company in terms of the goods or services it can provide
- providing user details, including an e-mail address which will be used as your login
The In-tend Portal is completely free to Suppliers to register and use; it will provide a simplified supplier interface making the bidding process easier and help Suppliers to achieve compliant responses to tendering and contracting opportunities.
What help and support is available to Suppliers?
Support is available to help you become familiar with the new system including:
- dedicated help desk, available Monday - Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- supplier help guides available for download from the e-Tendering Portal
If you need to speak to the In-Tend Help Desk, please call 0844 2728810, or e-mail them at email@example.com.
Public Contracts Regulations 2015
Tenders with a value that exceeds the current EU thresholds will also be advertised in the Official Journal of the European Union.
Do you have an enquiry?
If you have a query you can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please DO NOT SEND any tenders or PQQs (pre-qualifying questionnaires) to this e-mail address.