On 23 November 2020 the Government published Procurement Policy Note 08/20 – Introduction of Find a Tender (PPN 08/20). Alongside PPN 08/20 they also published some FAQs, and a useful flowchart to help contracting authorities decide where to publish their procurements after the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.
PPN 08/20 reminds contracting authorities that from the end of the transition period, notices for new procurements must be published on Find a Tender (FTS), the new UK e-notification service, rather than on the Official Journal of the European Union/Tenders Electronic Daily (OJEU/TED). This requirement applies to procurements launched after 11:00pm on 31 December 2020. Legal and policy requirements to advertise on other platforms such as Contracts Finder remain unchanged.
Where a contracting authority currently uses a third party provider to send notices to OJEU/TED, they may continue to use them as long as the third party provider has successfully completed integration with FTS and is able to submit notices to FTS. PPN 08/20 recommends contracting authorities ask their third party providers about plans to integrate with FTS.
Contracting authorities that wish to publish directly onto FTS will need to have a Supplier Registration Service (SRS). Usefully, it the contracting authority is already a user of Contracts Finder they will be able to publish to FTS automatically without any further action needed to set up an SRS.
Where a procurement has been launched but not finalised before 11:00pm on 31 Decemebr 2020, contracting authorities are required to publish notices, including contract award notices, to OJEU/TED after the end of the transition period. Details of the contract award must also still be published on Contracts Finder. Although it is not a legal requirement, contracting authorities are asked to send notices that have to be sent to OJEU/TED to FTS as well after they’ve been sent to OJEU/TED so that suppliers have just one place to look for contract opportunities in the UK.
PPN 08/20 also asks contracting authorities to make their suppliers aware that they will need access to FTS to be able to find public sector contracts in the UK for procurements launched after 11:00pm on 31 December 2020.