There are over 16,000 NSW Government eligible buyers spending around $15 billion in goods and services each year and there are a number of supply opportunities for businesses which are available through a range of government contracts and prequalification schemes.
If you are new to supplying to government, there are some systems and tools used by eligible government buyers that you should be aware of:
- NSW eTendering - this is the place where NSW Government agencies advertise their business opportunities.
- NSW eQuote – the online quoting system used by agencies to seek quotes from prequalified businesses.
- NSW eCatalogues – an online catalogue and purchasing system connecting buyers and suppliers where suppliers list their goods and services offered under contract.
Supplying through the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Policy
The NSW Government has an SME policy framework to improve access to business opportunities with government. As part of this policy, government agencies in non-metropolitan areas can make purchases of up to $5,000 including GST from local SMEs without reference to the panel contracts.
Please note: the government recognises small to medium enterprises to be businesses from NSW, other states and territories of Australia and New Zealand, with up to 200 full-time equivalent employees.
How to find business opportunities
NSW Government agencies list all their business opportunities on the NSW eTendering website. To be eligible to respond, suppliers first need to become registered as a supplier with NSW Government. There is an online registration facility that is available to do this on NSW eTendering.
Registering to supply
Suppliers interested in accessing any type of NSW government business opportunity should first become a registered supplier. This can be done by completing the New User online registration form on the NSW eTendering website.
Anyone can view the eTendering website. However, only registered suppliers will receive email notifications of upcoming business opportunities and be able to respond to them online. Registered suppliers can also view information on current and closed offers, and see details about awarded contracts.
Training is available to show suppliers how to set up a profile on NSW eTendering, download requests for tenders and upload responses.
Ways you can supply to government
Once registered on NSW eTendering, suppliers can apply to do business with eligible buyers through a range of market engagement methods. These different avenues for supplying to government include: supplying through a panel contract, prequalifying to supply through a scheme, responding to a request for tender/quote or through an expression of interest.
The two exceptions apply to regional agencies and schools. They provide an opportunity for small local businesses to supply goods and services direct to eligible buyers under specific thresholds:
Exception 1: In non-metropolitan areas, regional agencies can purchase up to $5,000 (incl. GST) of goods and services direct form any source.
Exception 2: Where the Local Schools, local decision policy applies, schools can purchase up to $5,000 (incl. GST) of goods and services direct from any source.
Become an approved supplier on a NSW Government contract
NSW Government contracts provide the principal procurement method used by NSW government agencies to purchase goods and services, usually as a result of a tender process.
A NSW Government contract is a closed procurement arrangement where suppliers are approved against a specific contract to provide eligible buyers with a selection of goods and/or services for a fixed period of time.
The successful suppliers provide goods and services during the contract period, including any contract extensions and, generally, no new suppliers can be added during the contract period.
There are a number of NSW Government contracts currently in place, which can be viewed on the contract user guides page of the ProcurePoint website.
Apply to become a supplier to one or more Prequalification Schemes
The NSW Government has established a range of schemes through which suppliers can apply to qualify for business opportunities with government. These types of schemes provide a more flexible procurement approach to meeting the government’s sourcing requirements.
They provide government buyers with immediate access to lists of expert resources. These schemes aim to reduce red tape and streamline the application process for agencies who wish to source and engage external expertise and for suppliers to register for a range of business opportunities with government agencies that match their expertise and experience. Some prequalification schemes have the advantage of not ‘locking-up’ a market, with new suppliers being able to register at any time for most schemes. Suppliers should check the Terms and Conditions for each specific scheme.
View more information about the range of current Prequalification Schemes including the application and assessment processes.
Currently, registered suppliers can apply online for business opportunities available through the Performance and Management Services Prequalification Scheme and ICT Services Scheme. Other schemes will move to an online application process in due course.
Respond to other online government opportunities
Registered suppliers can also access and respond electronically to requests for tenders, quotes, proposals and expressions of interest that are listed on NSW eTendering. The website lists proposed, current, closed and archived opportunities.
What types of goods and services might be requested?
NSW Government contracts enable buyers to purchase a wide range of goods and services at competitive prices. They are established with the aim of maximising savings through negotiated price reductions, enhancing the available product range, and increasing supplier contract performance.
View a listing of all NSW Government contracts.
ProcurePoint also provides a ‘by category' listing to make it easier to search what specific goods and services government contracts.
Responding to government business opportunities
Responding to a tender opportunity
Tenders are advertised on the eTendering website and they are generally in an electronic format. Suppliers can view these opportunities at any time, but they need to be registered to access any documents and respond to the opportunity. Registered suppliers also receive email notifications of any new tender opportunities.
Responding to an opportunity through a prequalification scheme
Agency buyers are able to access an increasing number of prequalification schemes that list businesses who have been assessed and pre-qualified to supply through a specific scheme. Some schemes provide lists of suppliers that can respond to both low-value, low-risk opportunities and also high-value, higher risk supply opportunities,or both. Suppliers are encouraged to apply at the level that best suits their business.
Requests for quotation against a prequalification scheme may be completed electronically through the eQuote electronic quoting system or they may be paper-based.
Agencies will make requests via a number of other market engagement methods that businesses may respond to. These could be:
- Request for quote
- Request for proposal
- Expression of interest
Find out more information about these types of market engagement methods.
Evaluation and assessment
As already outlined, registered suppliers can download documentation, complete their tender responses and lodge them on the eTendering website. The names and addresses of companies that have responded to any NSW Government tender opportunity will be listed on this website within seven days of a tender closing.
The tender responses are then assessed against the evaluation criteria.
Successful suppliers are contacted and provided with contract documentation. Once completed and lodged, suppliers are ready to trade. Unsuccessful suppliers are also notified and debriefed of the assessment outcome.
Government agencies are required to provide a summary of each awarded contract with an estimated value of $150,000 or above (including GST). This is available to view on the eTendering website and agencies are required to lodge the notification within 60 days of the contract commencing.
Registered suppliers can apply online to qualify for business opportunities. Applications are assessed against a range of evaluation criteria appropriate to the scheme.
Successful suppliers are contacted and advised that they are ready to trade.
Prequalification schemes can have 2 levels of qualification, a Standard Prequalification List and an Advanced Prequalification list. A Standard Prequalification list allows suppliers to self-register to prequalify for the scheme for low value engagements, while the Advanced Prequalification schemes require completion of an assessment process for higher value engagements.
Responsibilities of suppliers
Under the terms of their agreement with NSW Government eligible buyers, successful suppliers will need to fulfil a number of requirements including:
- ensuring goods or services are delivered as per their contract with the buyer
- ensuring accurate documentation including invoices
- completing a number of reporting requirements in relation to orders and spend
- conducting regular meetings with the contracting agency
- updating their contact information, product and pricing information on NSWBuy eCatalogues
About NSWBuy eCatalogues
NSWBuy eCatalogues is an online tool that lists all contracted goods and services available through the current supply arrangements to NSW Government agencies. It allows registered government buyers to easily browse, view and buy the products and services available from approved suppliers. Suppliers are able to log in and update their NSWBuy eCatalogues content online at any time.
Keep your supplier details up to date
Registered suppliers are also able to log in to the NSW eTendering website to manage their contact details and supplier profile and make sure it is up to date.
Suppliers are encouraged to regularly check and make sure their information is current. This will ensure they receive updates about available business opportunities.