What we do

The Supplier Development Programme (SDP) was established in 2008, and is a partnership of Local Authorities, Scottish Government and other public bodies that works together to bring FREE support in all aspects of tendering to Scottish-based SMEs.

SDP helps businesses that have little or no experience of tendering and are often too small to have dedicated bid/tender resources to contemplate bidding for public sector contracts. SDP aims to help such businesses become what we call “tender ready” for contracts, which improves their prospects when competing throughout Scotland where there is an annual public spend of £14.5 billion. In conjunction with Scottish local authorities, SDP delivers this support through a Programme of free training and events which can be booked via the SDP website.

Through its corporate membership model, SDP proactively aligns larger primary contractors that deliver public sector contracts to connect and diversify their local supply chains throughout Scotland, through a proven partnership model that makes supply chains more open and transparent.

SDP is a well-established national shared service that provides a range of directly relevant activities and support to realising Community Wealth Building ambitions. SDP provides very strong value for money; excellent analytical capacity to produce evidence of impact; provides a trusted ethical wall between buyers and suppliers; and links Community Wealth Building procurement and economic development ambitions through its established structure.

By assisting businesses to become tender ready for public procurement, SDP improves all-round efficiency, sustainability and market potential – and supports local wealth creation. As of March 2022, the Programme has more than 19,500 SME registered businesses in Scotland.

SDP’s key objectives are to:

  • Raise awareness of opportunities arising from public sector spend;
  • Provide training and support via traditional classroom style, face-to-face, or via webinar, in all aspects public sector tendering;
  • Improve the tender readiness of local suppliers through early intervention and early engagement;
  • Support our member organisations to meet the Sustainable Procurement Duty; and
  • Promote links and integrate with other government business support services.

You can engage with SDP by registering and logging in, where you can learn more about booking training and events, and access additional resources.

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