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Robertson FM engages with more than 100 suppliers at online supplier engagement event with the Supplier Development Programme

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Robertson Facilities Management (FM), in partnership with the Supplier Development Programme (SDP), hosted its first online engagement event in January 2022. The event was aimed at suppliers of all sizes to fulfil the local supply chain requirements of an upcoming contract with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS).

The Talking Tenders webinar focused on a Hard FM Services contract opportunity for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. In total, 118 suppliers attended the online event to find out how to engage with the Robertson FM supply chain. This included 95 attendees from 78 unique Scottish SME businesses.

Stephen McDonagh, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Procurement Manager, said:

“SFRS recognises that SMEs, including third and fourth sector organisations, can support economic growth and employment in Scotland. This is particularly important in the recovery from COVID-19.

“As a member of SDP, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service understands the difficulties that SMEs face accessing relevant opportunities for them, such as those which are present in contracts like the Hard FM Services contracts, which is the largest contract to date awarded by the SFRS.

“As such, we are delighted and encouraged to see such great attendance at the recent SDP webinar held to assist SME businesses understand the potential opportunities with Robertson FM in the delivery of our Hard FM Services Contract. As detailed in our Corporate Procurement Strategy, we are committed to improving the access to such opportunities, and the event hosted in January by Robertson FM and the SDP is pivotal in support of this.”

The aim of the event was to engage with Scottish SMEs so that suppliers could:

  • Understand more about the upcoming opportunity;
  • Understand how the tender process works; and
  • Learn about the Supplier Development Programme’s range of training services, and how to become ‘tender ready’ for the upcoming contract and framework opportunities.

Sean Hunter, Operations Director for Scotland, said:

“Robertson FM became members of SDP with a view to support our aim of engaging with a wider and more diverse supply chain across local communities in Scotland.

“At a recent event, organised in partnership with the Supplier Development Programme and our client, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Robertson FM was introduced to more than 100 suppliers that we may otherwise have been unaware of, which will be key to the successful delivery of our Hard FM contract with SFRS.

“We look forward to building upon this solid foundation and putting the expertise of SDP to work to continue our commitment to an open transparent supply chain.”

Gillian Cameron, SDP Programme Manager, added:

"This was our first event with Robertson FM since it became a Corporate Member of the Programme. Our team promoted so widely that 118 suppliers took part in this session, demonstrating the scale of appetite from Scottish SMEs to find out about Hard FM Services opportunities and how important engagement events with suppliers actually are for national contracts with supply chain opportunities.

“As small businesses look for stability in an ever-changing landscape, opportunities to engage with the supply chain can offer SMEs a route to grow their business - the Supplier Development Programme's model works to do just that. We welcome all Scottish SMEs, third sector organisations and supported businesses, as well as other suppliers, to fully embrace the free news, engagement, support and training that is on offer through the Supplier Development Programme."

Supplier Feedback

After the event, SDP issued a supplier feedback form. Nearly all Scottish SMEs (96%) who provided feedback said they were more likely to bid after participating in the event, and almost two-thirds (65%) of those businesses felt more positive about potentially working with Robertson FM. Suppliers that attended the event commented:

  • "We now feel more confident. I will be looking to attend more webinars in the future to develop our skills in this area." - Micro business based in Argyll & Bute
  • "I feel excited about the upcoming opportunities especially as I now understand the process better." - Small business from Stirling
  • "The presenter was excellent, and the end of presentation questions were answered very well by the staff from Robertson FM. This event was very good." - Sole trader from Fife
  • "I feel more confident about tendering for this Contract as the staff at Robertson's seem to be very approachable and willing to help smaller companies like ours with any issues that may arise in tendering." - Micro business from Glasgow City
  • A well-presented webinar which was very worthwhile." - Medium-sized business from Perth & Kinross

SFRS promotion

Promotion through the Supplier Development Programme

The Supplier Development Programme has a robust social media presence on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and utilises this to promote contract opportunities and engagement events on a regularly to Scottish businesses. In advance of the Talking Tenders with Robertson FM event, to contribute to an open and transparent supply chain, SDP promoted the event. Collectively, the posts earned 41,626 impressions (the number of times users saw a post) and 663 engagements (total number of times a user interacted with a post.

The Supplier Development Programme is proud that 178 individuals pre-registered to attend, and two-thirds of this total attended on the day. Early indications from these stats related to the model of partnership working between the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service, Robertson FM, and the Supplier Development Programme evidence a commitment to connect the supply chain with Scotland's SME business base.

Support from the Supplier Development Programme

Read more about the Talking Tenders with Robertson FM event on SDP’s case study page.

The Supplier Development Programme is working with Robertson FM to bring bespoke, aligned tender training to suppliers in 2022. Keep an eye on the SDP Calendar for upcoming free training events!

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