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Buying beyond price and quality a key focus

Contractors at Waipatu Marae

Hawke’s Bay’s five councils have a big effect on the region’s economy through their purchasing decisions and a new approach to procurement will broaden that effect to enhance public value progressively over the next year.

The councils are working together to include ‘broader outcomes’ beyond price and quality in their decisions to purchase or contract for goods or services.

The move is in response to a government-level initiative for wider social, economic, cultural, and environmental outcomes through the acquisition of goods, services and works.

“As a council, we are significant procurers of goods and services, and we know we have an important role to play to incorporate outcomes wider than price and quality into our current procurement process,” says Hastings District Council Major Sandra Hazlehurst.

The progressive procurement approach has already been used in Hastings District Council’s Jobs for Heretaunga programme, and in Central Hawke’s Bay District Council’s Provincial Growth Fund projects.

“We are proud of the role we’re playing to bring progressive procurement and the associated outcomes to life across the region’s public sector,” says Central Hawke’s Bay District Council Mayor Alex Walker.

“Procurement using a ‘broader outcomes’ approach has led us to think about the secondary benefits we can generate over and above the core scope of a project, and it’s an emerging area of good practice for councils,” adds Ms Hazlehurst.

“The five Hawke’s Bay councils have collaborated to develop a progressive procurement toolkit, to be introduced across each council from June 2021,” says Ms Walker.

There are many examples of suppliers already acting in this way, taking the lead on upskilling in new trade areas, creating jobs and apprenticeships, investing in workplace literacy and numeracy, and making significant reductions in construction waste going to landfill. For that reason, the councils in Hawke’s Bay want to support those that are already innovating in these and other ways.

The councils are committed to partnering with their suppliers, industry, communities, iwi, and other government agencies to ensure meaningful and long-term positive outcomes for Hawke’s Bay.

The new guide will help each council to see how it can include sustainable outcomes as part of their procurements.

An associated Suppliers Guide has also been developed that will help inform and provide further background for the supplier community and which will be available on individual council websites.

3 June 2021

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