More collaboration is taking place in the procurement process as contractors grapple with supply chain disruption.

A report by construction, property and management consultancy and Thames Tap partner Rider Levett Bucknall (RLB UK) has found the industry has moved towards more negotiated procurement activity.

RLB conducted the annual Procurement Trends Report with main contractors across the UK. It found concerns about having too much work are greatest in the South East.

The study also reports:

  • 75 per cent of respondents are reporting a reduction in the length of time fixed prices are being offered.
  • A reduction in the use of single-stage procurement routes while two-stage and frameworks increased.
  • Negotiated tenders, frameworks and two stage projects are more frequently taking longer. Only 16 per cent are widening their supply chains to mitigate risks.
  • In the public sector, value-based contractor selection is now reported in 74 per cent of projects as opposed to 54 per cent in the private sector.
  • Health and infrastructure sectors are looking particularly heated in terms of procurement activity.
  • Commercial fit-out projects with budgets between £5 million – £7.5m are seeing more competitive procurement activity.

Paul Beeston, partner at RLB UK, said: “In a heated procurement market, it comes as no real surprise that single stage routes to market are being dropped in favour of two stage and frameworks.

“It is reassuring to see collaborative practices embraced both by clients making increased use of value-based selection criteria and by contractors’ responses to challenges in material availability.

“Working collaboratively is the only way to achieve better procurement outcomes and more focus must be placed on the supply chain in a challenging market such as this, to reduce the potential impacts on timing and cost.”

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