IPP and panels policy guide

Indigenous AffairsEconomic DevelopmentIndigenous Procurement Policy
Monday, 26 November 2018
Publication author(s):
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
Publication abstract:

If the good or service you are procuring is covered by a mandated whole-of-government arrangement, the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs) require that you use the mandatory panel arrangement.

If the good or service you are procuring is covered by a mandated whole-of-government arrangement, the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs) require that you use the mandatory panel arrangement.

A list of mandated whole-of-government arrangements is available on the Department of Finance website.

The mandatory set aside process and panels

If the mandatory set aside process applies to the goods or services you are seeking to purchase, then you need to follow the mandatory set aside process before you can use an existing panel arrangement.

There are two exceptions to this:

  1. Whole-of-government purchasing arrangements.
  2. Panels where the Commonwealth has contractually committed to the panel being an ‘exclusive’ arrangement.

If the mandatory set aside process applies, then you will still need to check the Supply Nation register to identify whether there is more than one Indigenous SME available that could deliver the required goods or services on a value for money basis.

Once you have identified the available Indigenous SMEs, you will need to conduct a value-for-money assessment commensurate with the size, scope and risk of the procurement.

Indigenous SMEs and government panels

Generally panel arrangements are established via an open tender process. Entities should encourage Indigenous SMEs to put forward a bid as part of the competitive tender process when panel arrangements are being established or refreshed.

There is a clear benefit for Indigenous SMEs to be part of whole-of-government purchasing arrangements and ‘exclusive’ panel arrangements, as the mandatory set aside process does not apply to these arrangements.

In addition, there is a benefit to Indigenous SMEs being on other panel arrangements because it streamlines the quoting/value for money assessment process and provides more exposure to government buyers.

Many Commonwealth agencies have established panels of suppliers to streamline purchasing of goods and/or services. Panels are generally established for goods and/or services that are purchased regularly.

In addition to agency specific panels, the Department of Finance has established whole-of-government purchasing arrangements, some which are mandatory. A list of mandated whole-of-government arrangements is on the Department of Finance website.

Tips for procurement officers

  • Talk to your central procurement team.
  • Know whether you are required to purchase from a panel or whether it is optional.
  • Know the Indigenous businesses which offer the goods and services you need and ensure relevant Indigenous businesses are aware of upcoming panel tendering processes.
  • Contact Supply Nation and PM&C’s Regional Network Offices for information about local Indigenous businesses when establishing or refreshing a panel.
  • Consider coordinated procurement arrangements with agencies which have Indigenous businesses on their supplier panels.

Understand the requirements of the Indigenous Procurement Policy and when you must comply with the mandatory set-aside.

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