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New Scottish Procurement Policy Note: Measuring social impact in public procurement (10/2020)

Scottish Procurement has issued a new Scottish Procurement Policy Note 10/2020, which clarifies the Scottish Government’s policy on measuring social impact through procurement. Success in contributing to Scotland’s purpose is measured in terms of outcomes. These outcomes align to the National Performance Framework and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

This SPPN also includes support for application of this policy in the form of the sustainable procurement duty tools and accompanying guides.

The key points are:

  • the Scottish Government does not endorse monetary gauges to measure social impact in procurement as part of the procurement process;
  • social impact is not fixed or easily transferable. Impact arises from the interaction between supply and demand, and therefore will be specific to the individual, community, and place. Public bodies must engage with communities who have an interest in the contract to get the best possible outcome;
  • care should be taken to ensure that impact measurements do not create a barrier to businesses;
  • success in contributing to Scotland’s purpose is measured in terms of outcomes. These outcomes align to the National Performance Framework and the UN Sustainable Development Goals; and
  • this approach complements procurement principles of relevance and proportionality and Scottish legislation to rule out price only or cost only as the sole award criteria for public contracts.

SPPN 10/2020 can be read in full on the Scottish Government website.

SDP Scotland

The Supplier Development Programme has issued previous communications regarding SPPNs which can be viewed on the SDP Scotland website.

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