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Public Contracts Scotland - Any experiences?

  • Thread starter Scottish Business Owner
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Scottish Business Owner

Scottish Business Owner

New Member
From what I can gather this website is essentially the hub for businesses trying to get public sector contracts in Scotland.

I signed up for this a couple of months back really to see how difficult the process was. It was easy enough to sign up and get alerts and i've had a few alerts over the past few months. To be honest though when you look more into the details of the contract it's hard to see how small business can actually fit the criteria to actually get fully through a tender process.

I wonder if this is quite common. Have you used this site before? It would be great if you could share your experiences particularly if it's lead to you getting business.

Am I right when I say this is the central hub for these contracts is anyone aware of any other Scottish based sites that do the same thing?

Ultimately is this a legitimate way for a small business in Scotland to get sales into their business?


New Member
Hi , not sure if I am going to answer all your specific questions, but a decision that we made over 2 years ago now was not to go for these tenders. As a small business we do not have the time to layout to different specifications each time our proposal based on 'woolly' mumbo jumbo most of the time that these tenders come up with! Sorry if I sound overly negative, but the majority of these documents are so politically correct they actually lose the essence of what it is they are wanting you to quote for. The last one we did took us over 2 days to fully complete the process, only to find that because we didnt at the time have some form of insurance we would never have got the job even if we had proved we would have been the best company for it. I appreciate that every quote takes up a certain amount of time that you have to write off if you are going to go for a job, however, we lost 2 business days for 2 people which is a lot of time lost for something we should never have gone for in the first place.

We have spoken to many other small businesses about this and the general consensus is all this red tape and hoops you have to cut and jump through make the process untenable for the majority of people, also the crunch point comes when they are expecting 24 hour 7 days a week 365 days a year support for £50 a year, that is usually the point in which we laugh and click away from the project.

So I guess, I am totally negative in this area, I too would like to know if anyone has found this to be a legitimate way for a small business to get sales!

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Active Member
Verified Member
I've used it a few times. In fact, I've got a lead I'm going to visit tomorrow as a result of them posting a tender on the Public Contracts Scotland site.

I don't think the site is suitable for all though. For example, it's going to seriously stifle their abilities to get a service they really "need" over one they think they need.
Alan @ Sole

Alan @ Sole

New Member
I'd echo Katie's comments. I get alerts from it as well but from what I've heard from others it's a non-starter. Expecting even one man home based operations to complete H&S risk assessments and diversity breakdowns etc.

We've got contracts with some big public organisations and one of them took 18 months to secure...

The one thing you can't buy is time.
EmployEasily Legal Services

EmployEasily Legal Services

EmployEasily Legal Services
May suit some but it's not for my business. In my experience the headline in the alert is pretty inaccurate in relation to the detail of the requirement and the time and effort needed to go through the process is a killer.

I also took a decision not to waste time tendering for public sector contracts in the basis that the squeeze is rarely worth the juice!

About a year ago we were invited to tender for a contract that was practically an outline of our exact service offering and spent several days on the PQQ and formal presentation only to lose out in the last stage. When I asked for feedback as to why we were unsuccessful, all I was told was we were less 'flexible' than the company who were successful, utter bollocks!

Since then we have gone on to do business directly with several of the organisations who are under the 'umbrella' of the gov't body who put out the tender, which suggests to me that either the ultimate winners of the tender are ineffective or, the remit of the project failed to meet the actual need of the service users.

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