The Victorian Government Purchasing Board’s policy framework, as summarised below, repositions procurement as a core business function for departments.
Governance structure embeds procurement across the organisation and ensures alignment with business planning. It encompasses greater focus on upfront strategic planning and transparency to provide consistency of market approach and better value-for-money procurement decisions.
Complexity and capability assessment
Procurement decisions based on an assessment of complexity and the capability to conduct the procurement. Procurement can only proceed when the department determines that it has the necessary capability to meet the complexity of the procurement activity.
Market analysis and review
Market analysis determines the capacity of the market to supply and the opportunities for market-based solutions. A review of requirements and processes in response to market analysis determines the most appropriate path to market.
Applying a structured, measured approach to informing, evaluating and negotiating with suppliers.
Contract management and contract disclosure
Contract management is escalated to a high-level consideration early in the planning process to arrive at an integrated end-to-end procurement framework.
The department ensures that all procurement activity continues to meet the following VGPB directives.
- Value for money: a balanced judgement of a range of financial and non-financial factors, taking into account the mix of quality, cost and resources, fitness for purpose, total cost of ownership and risk.
- Accountability: the Accountable Officer has the flexibility to conduct procurement activities using appropriate capability to provide value-for-money outcomes.
- Probity: high standards of behaviour and actions in the conduct of procurement processes, including equity, confidentiality, avoiding conflicts of interest, and consumer/supplier confidence in the integrity of government procurement processes.
- Scalability: The relationship between the complexity of a procurement project and the capability of the organisation to conduct it to achieve a good procurement outcome.
The VGPB's Governance Policy requires that departments publish a summary of procurement activities planned to be conducted over the forthcoming 12-18 months.
This Procurement Activity Plan was last updated on 06 May 2021.
The aim of the plan is to provide potential suppliers with an overview of the types of procurement activities (goods and services only) that the department may undertake over this period. The plan will be updated from time to time to reflect other planned procurement activities.
The department also purchases a wide range of other goods and services which are not necessarily listed in the Procurement Activity Plan as they are purchased in accordance with government policy from existing whole of government State Purchase Contracts – refer to the Victorian Government Purchasing Board website’s State Purchase Contracts section.
All planned procurement activities are subject to revision or cancellation. The information in this Procurement Activity Plan is provided for planning purposes only and it does not present a solicitation or constitute a request for proposal, nor is it a commitment by the Government to purchase the described goods or services.
The department places a high level of importance on the way it conducts procurement processes and how it interacts with the market.
Complaints will be handled in a consistent, fair and transparent manner in accordance with the following process.
A person with an issue or concern about a procurement process should first address their concerns to the relevant contact person for the process. If the issue or concern cannot be resolved, a complaint can be lodged with the department’s Chief Procurement Officer as outlined below.
Note: The complaint must relate to a procurement process issue. Matters of improper conduct, corruption or fraud should be directed to the department’s Secretary to be dealt with via other means.
Step 1: Complaint lodged and acknowledged
The complaint should be in the form of a letter or email and including the following documentation:
- A concise written statement clearly setting out the basis and specific details for the complaint
- How the subject of the complaint and the specific issues affect the person or organisation making the complaint
- Any relevant background information including prior actions or correspondence involving the department in relation to the issue
- The outcome desired by the person or organisation making the complaint
- Copies of all relevant documentary evidence supporting the complaint.
Written complaints should be received within five working days of the complainant’s initial contact with the department regarding the complaint. Any delays are likely to adversely affect the timeliness of the department’s response and any proposed remedial actions.
All documents pertaining to the complaint should be sent by letter or email to the following address:
Chief Procurement Officer Procurement and Contract Management Branch Department of Health and Human Services GPO Box 4057 Melbourne VIC 3001
Receipt of the complaint will be acknowledged by the department within five working days of receipt by the department. A designated investigation manager will be appointed who is not involved in the subject matter of the complaint and who has appropriate knowledge of procurement policies and relevant processes. The complaint will be recorded in the department’s register.
Step 2: Complaint investigation process and timeline
If information provided is sufficient then within 20 working days the complaint will be investigated, details recorded in department register and response provided in writing to the complainant.
If additional information is required, or the services of external parties are required to advise on elements of the complaint, there will be an extension of time. This will be based on the number of working days between the request for, and receipt of additional information and/or advice sought.
Step 3: Complaint outcome
The complainant is provided with the complaint outcome in writing. The complaint investigation outcome is recorded in the department’s register.
Either the complainant accepts the finding or may refer their complaint to the Victorian Government Purchasing Board (VGPB) for review if not satisfied with the findings and actions of the department. This could be related to the management of the complaint or the application of supply policies (refer to the Victorian Government Purchasing Board).
Complaints submitted to the VGPB must be lodged by letter or email within 10 working days of the receipt of the findings by the department to the following address:
Victorian Government Purchasing Board Department of Treasury and Finance GPO Box 4379 Melbourne 3001
The complainant must provide the VGPB with the following material:
- Evidence that the department did not correctly apply supply policies in relation to a procurement activity
- Evidence that the department’s complaints management procedures were not applied correctly
- A copy of all relevant correspondence between the complainant and the department in relation to the nature of the complaint
- Any additional material requested by the VGPB to assist it in its findings.
Other government bodies that may be able to assist include the Office of the Small Business Commissioner and the Office of the Ombudsman.