Procurement affects virtually every organisation. Public spending alone will soon exceed €2trn per annum in the EU. However, tendering systems currently favours companies with the resources to track and complete large tenders.

We know that buyers in SMEs can compete effectively with their larger counterparts and deliver value for money, but need additional information and better tools to process this information and make decisions.

Procurement managers, whether accountable to taxpayers or company boards, need novel decision-making tools that can tackle the complexities of modern supply chains and business transactions, while leveraging the large amounts of data and advanced analytics capabilities available. Our project will deliver these tools, alongside enabling technologies and data to make procurement across the EU more efficient, competitive, accountable, and fair.

We will develop an integrated technology platform, with data, core services, open APIs and online tools, which will be validated in 3 business cases in public/corporate procurement in Slovenia, Spain and Italy.

The expected impact is substantial, with €200m savings in EU public spending; 25% increase in the value unlocked by enhanced procurement management in the private sector; and 20% more SMEs bidding for contracts.

We will deploy an online portal for buyers, deliver the data value chains, enabling technologies, and innovation that are critically needed for this fundamental change to happen. This will include:

  • market development analysis tools that highlight areas where demand is exceeding budgets, helping buyers to manage costs; and
  • competitive tender analysis tools that will allow buyers to evaluate tenders for their relative competitiveness prior to publication.

We will develop an integrated technology platform, with data, core services, open APIs and online tools, which will be validated in 3 business cases in public/corporate procurement in Slovenia, Spain and Italy. The expected impact is substantial, with €200m savings in EU public spending; 25% increase in the value unlocked by enhanced procurement management in the private sector; and 20% more SMEs bidding for contracts.

Specifically we will develop technologies and online tools that will make it easier for buyers to award business to the right supplier:

  • Identifying opportunities: Looking at the categories, sectors and contract sizes that make projects suitable for smaller companies. As well as looking at the supplier qualities required to deliver on these projects.
  • Mitigating risks: Identifying the levels of resilience and the attributes that suppliers need to display to deliver successfully. As well as how to structure projects to absorb failure, rather than trying to prevent all failure, as this leads to more expensive projects with few supplies.
  • Establishing procurement practices that engage SMEs: Development of tools that provide early warning of upcoming projects that could be completed by SMEs. Using data to identify where buyers are routinely using structures that hinder competition and prevent SMEs from bidding.
  • Managing down the supply chain: Developing tools that allow SMEs to publicly state an interest in sub-contracting on a project, including being able to submit details of their own capabilities.
  • Whole cost analysis: Developing algorithms that allow buyers to complete a ‘whole-cost’ estimates of awarding a contract to a supplier including the likely tax revenues to be gained from a supplier and the positive impact that the supplier may bring economically to a buyer.