Procurement Reform

Procurement Reform




'The effectiveness of public procurement is vital to our economy, our environment and most importantly, for the users of buildings. We need procurement that delivers buildings of the best value and highest quality.'




Angela Brady, RIBA President, 2011 - 2013


Mystery Shopper - report bad procurement practice

The RIBA has called on members to play an active role in procurement reform by making use of the government's 'Mystery Shopper' service. The Mystery Shopper has been launched by the Cabinet Office - which is leading the programme of procurement reform across government – in order to make it easier for suppliers and those bidding for contracts to report poor procurement practice within any public bodies. The government has pledged to investigate each complaint received and take action where possible to ensure that practice is improved. Francis Maude, the Minister for the Cabinet Office, has recently announced an extension to this service to include issues involving unfair practices in the supply chain.

The role of the scheme is to:

  • Provide a clear, structured and direct route for suppliers to raise concerns about public procurement practice when attempts at resolving issues with a contracting authority or a first-tier supplier have failed.
  • Provide reasoned feedback to enquirers on their concerns.
  • Help the Cabinet Office to identify areas of poor procurement practice so that it can work with the contracting authority to put them right, and help to ensure similar cases do not arise in future.
  • Take action to reduce the likelihood of similar issues arising in other authorities.
  • Hold the government to account on progress towards delivering the 11 February 2011 and 9 March 2012 announcements.

The RIBA encourages members to use this Government facility and report poor procurement practice. To find out more information about the scheme, please visit the Cabinet Office website.


Building Ladders of Opportunity; How reforming construction procurement can drive growth in the UK economy


This report contains the RIBA's detailed recommendations to government on the reforms we believe are needed.




RIBA Procurement Survey 2012


The RIBA commissioned Mirza & Nacey Research to conduct an online survey amongst architectural practices during the period January to February 2012.









Procurement case studies


This series of case studies highlights areas of procurement practice where we have recommended that reforms are necessary.




Comparative procurement


This report was prepared for the RIBA by law firm Burges Salmon LLP and looks at procurement regulation and practice in Germany, Sweden and the UK.





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