Short Guide to How Dundee City Council Buys Goods and Services from Suppliers


The Council is funded by national and local taxpayers so when it needs to buy goods or services from suppliers it has to do this in a way that is clear, fair and achieves value for money. This means there are certain processes which have to be followed most of which are about using competition when we need to buy something. This short guide has been prepared to explain these processes and provide further information for anyone interested in doing business with the Council.

Invitation to Tender/Quote

For supplies, services and works contract opportunities, the Council requires to seek competition by either:-

  • Seeking competitive tenders or quotations (provided that these are not exempted on the grounds of e.g. special urgency or sole compatible supply); 


  • Using collaborative contracts which have also been duly advertised and tendered for competitively and set up by a central purchasing body (CPB), and are available for use by Dundee City Council.

The principal CPB’s which Dundee City Council may make use of in this way are:-

All Dundee City Council contracting opportunities outwith these above arrangements of a value of more than £50,000 for supplies, services or construction works are advertised on the Public Contracts Scotland (PCS) contracts advertising portal, offering a central point of access to information about tender opportunities and contract awards across the whole Scottish public sector. 

Opportunities with a value of less than £50,000 will be let through a competitive quotation process and will typically involve using Public Contracts Scotland (PCS) portal where the value is over £10,000.

Setting Up a Supplier Profile Within Public Contracts Scotland (PCS)

Registration is free and enables suppliers to receive automatic, free e-mail alerts for relevant contracting opportunities.  

It is recommended that suppliers establish a comprehensive ‘Supplier Profile’ within PCS, ensuring that they have selected their supplier classifications for all relevant areas of spend.  This will provide visibility, of the extent of their company offering, to public sector organisations such as Dundee City Council, who may be looking to source suppliers to quote for the provision of goods, services or works.

Dundee City Council’s Buying Profile

Further information on supplying to Dundee City Council can be found on Public Contracts Scotland website.

You should type in ‘Dundee City Council’ as the ‘Buying Organisation’ in the search field.

Dundee City Council’s Contract Register

Details of the current contracts held by Dundee City Council are published on PCS and can be found on our Supplying to the Council webpage.

Business Support

Whether you're an existing enterprise looking for any kind of help or advice (eg funding, business advice, marketing etc), a business planning expansion or you're looking to invest in Dundee relocating to the area, the Business Gateway  will provide you with relevant information.

Supplying To The Public Sector

Further general information about supplying to the public sector is available through the Supplier Journey which is a Scottish Government web-based tool designed to help suppliers understand the public sector procurement process. When the public sector buys goods, works or services, it has to follow strict rules. This means that bidding for a public sector contract can seem complicated and time consuming. The Supplier Journey:

  • explains the process of awarding a public sector contract in straightforward terms;
  • sets out what buyers expect you to do at each stage in that process;
  • gives practical information on how you can find out about business opportunities, how to bid for business, and what to expect when delivering the contract;
  • tells you what support is available to help you win business, and what you can do if you are unsuccessful.

Procurement Legislation From 18 April 2016

The Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act 2014 provides a national legislative framework for sustainable public procurement that supports Scotland’s economic growth through improved procurement practice.

A summary of the changes is provided on the Scottish Government webpage.

Scottish Procurement Document (SPD)

The SPD is introduced to remove some of the barriers to participation in public procurement, especially for Small and Medium Enterprise's (SME's). 

The SPD replaces the requirement for suppliers to provide up-front evidence or certificates by allowing them to self-declare that they meet the relevant selection and exclusion criteria.  Bidders will be asked to provide proof of this at a later stage.

The Supplier Development Programme (as mentioned below) are running awareness sessions on the SPD.  Suppliers may find this helpful.

The Scottish Government have also developed a set of Frequently Asked Questions about the SPD which can be found on the Supplier Journey website. 

Supplier Development Programme

The Supplier Development Programme (SDP) was established in 2006 following a ‘business needs' survey which highlighted that procurement within the public sector was a high priority for small/medium enterprises (SME's) but also one which involved barriers when it came to engagement in the tendering process. Dundee City Council is a full member of the SDP and, because of that, it is free for Dundee based SMEs to join. If your business is an SME and you feel that it might benefit from development in terms of how best to engage with the public sector and the tendering process in particular, you can get more information on joining the SDP at its website.  

The Supplier Development Programme (SDP) run workshops throughout the year. If you are interested please follow the link  for further information.

If you would like to discuss any of the information contained in this document, please do not hesitate to contact the Procurement Team on:-

Please find undernoted a list of useful web addresses.

Dundee City Council Procurement
Buyer’s Profile for Dundee City Council
Register of Current Contracts
Business - Dundee
Tayside Procurement Consortium
Scotland Excel
Scottish Procurement
Crown Commercial Service
Public Contracts Scotland Portal
Changes to Public Procurement Rules
Scottish Government Supplier Journey
Single Procurement Document / FAQs
Supplier Development Programme / Details of Training, Events etc
Supplier Development Programme - events/training