Spotlight on Procurement

July 26, 2018 9:54 am

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Spotlight on Procurement

As the programme is now well underway and audits, verification and MA reviews on procurements continue, we thought it would be a good time to take stock and share some learning with you.  This spotlight focuses on some of the more recent common procurement issues and how to avoid these in future.  It also takes a look at several new documents, all of which are intended to help you when planning and running your procurements.

What are the most common issues?

Procurement procedure

Section 14 in Chapter 5 of the Procurement ESIF Law Requirements Note provides guidance on this.  In line with CCS guidance most standard procurements should be run using the Open or Restricted procedure. The use of any other procedure needs to be fully justified.  Refer to this action note.

Publication

Technical specifications and criteria

What are the consequences?
Non-compliance in procurement can lead to a number of issues such as:

How can you avoid these issues?

Procurement Plan
Consider Procurement from the outset of your project and regularly review!

Procurement Register
Keep this updated as this forms the basis of MA reviews and Audit and Verification Visits and will help to identify potential issues early on

Robust Procurement Systems and Audit Trail
Keep everything!! (refer to Procurement Aide Memoire for tips on what you need to keep

Lessons Learnt
Take into account feedback and issues from previous audits and common errors updated in bulletins

Seek Legal Advice
If in doubt – don’t leave it until it’s too late!

Use the Guidance
ESIF National Procurement Requirements and Commission documents are there to help and support you

Updated Guidance on Public Procurement
“Guidance for practitioners on the avoidance of the most common errors in public procurement of projects funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds”

On 13 February 2018, the European Commission published a revised guidance note, (developed by DG REGIO in cooperation with DG GROW) in order to help national, regional and local public officials dealing with EU funds to ensure efficient and transparent public procurement procedures for EU-funded projects

This revised version of the guidance contains practical suggestions, a series of good practice, real-life examples, explanations on specific topics, case studies, templates and useful links in order to help those who are involved in the day-to-day management of EU-supported projects.  This is a really helpful resource, and all grant recipients are advised to read this.

Framework and Dynamic Purchasing Systems Review Form

As part of the procurement review process, we have introduced a new form for reviewing Frameworks and Dynamic Purchasing Systems.  This form acts as a useful tool for grant recipients to ensure that they have a full set of documentation detailing the process followed.

What will you need to do?

Where procurements for your project have been selected through a Framework Agreement or Dynamic Purchasing System you will be asked to provide a set of core documents to the MA and provide clarification on seven questions in relation to the Framework.

PLEASE READ: IMPORTANT MESSAGE – When a procurement review is being carried out, claims containing costs relating to these procurements will not be paid unless a complete set of documentation has been provided and this form completed. Gaps in information will lead to delays in paying claims!!