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The Sustainable Procurement Tool reviews demand, procurement actions & whole life costs to improve social & environmental performance. The tool starts by prioritising the best sustainability opportunities. The Demand Review challenges each requirement to reduce or eliminate demand. The key to success is to gain early supplier engagement and specifically to encouraging local SMEs and social enterprises

Consider the potential to: • Use local lots to break down larger contracts – this makes it easier for both social enterprises and local SMEs to bid for contracts. • Ring-fence a pilot contract for local or Social Enterprise supply • Encourage collaboration between local SMEs and Social Enterprises • Hold supplier briefings prior to ITT to ensure that specifications are deliverable by smaller firms

Typical social enterprise opportunities at local level include: Health and social care,new build and refurbishment projects, small construction works,domestic cleaning, maintenance and repair, grounds & gardens, security,window cleaning and catering

specifications in contracts are where the greatest source of influence. This is because buyers have enormous freedom on specifications and can use specifications to establish minimum acceptable performance. They can also specify out undesirable features and specify in positive aspects. There were some lessons for writers of ITTs: • In particular always market test your specifications before issuing ITT, • the specifications must be they must be challenging but deliverable and affordable • and take care to maintain competition.