Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines

Comprehensive procurement guidelines are usually defined by large companies, governments, charities, trusts and local governments so that all involved know how, what and when purchases can be undertaken.

Comprehensive procurement guidelines are particularly important when recycling, corrosive materials, conservation are involved. The USA government agencies are particularly keen on producing comprehensive procurement guidelines that decree that recycled items be used whenever possible. They have a law: Section 6002 of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and Executive Order 13101.(1)

The contents of these guidelines are likely to include:

  • List of Products

This includes what you can and can not buy and will be heavily influenced by the Purchasing Strategy of the company, the political environment and legalities. This may include such factors as recycled items, non corrosive goods and perishable factors.

  • Type of Products

As stated above, recycled products are particularly popular.  Other guidelines may decree the amount of recyclable materials is contained within each product. Energy efficient and environmentally sound products are another popular request.

  • End of Life

This specifies how the product is disposed off. In the UK the disposal of refrigerators and computers are heavily controlled.

Large agencies such as The World Bank – the bank that assists third world countries both financially and technically – have comprehensive procurement guidelines that ensure that products and services are purchased without corruption at very beneficial prices.

Even other countries such as Scotland have a law, the Public Procurement Reform Programme, that ensures that all Scottish government agencies purchase in such a way that best practice is used to ensure that the public is best served.

There are always some overall principles that these countries and agencies expect to be adhered to.  These include:

  • Fairness, integrity, transparency and good governance in the procurement process.
  • Economies and efficiencies within the purchasing process.
  • That any tendered procurement will be on the basis of a fair competitive competition and that the best supplier that meets the specific needs will be chosen.

Comprehensive procurement guidelines are very important as they let everyone understand the principles and purchasing strategy of the company as well as how they can supply to this business or government.


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