Competitive procedure with negotiation timescales

The competitive procedure with negotiation is a two-stage process. It is possible to shorten the number of days as outlined below.

Stage 1 - Expressions of interest
Call for competition to enable potential tenderers to express their interest in participating. The normal period from publication of the contract notice on Find a Tender Service for suppliers to express an interest in taking part in the tender is 30 days.

A contract notice must also be published on Contracts Finder . This notice should not be published before it has been published on Find a Tender Service or at least 48 hours have elapsed from the receipt of the confirmation of the notice from Find a Tender Service.  The contract notice on Contracts Finder must be published within 24 hours of when it is entitled to be published as detailed above.

Stage 2 - Invitations to tender
Submission of tenders - After the initial assessment of the requests to participate, candidates shall have a minimum of 30 days from the date of issue of the invitation to tender documentation to submit initial tenders.

Use of electronic submission of tenders
Where the contracting authority permits the submission of tenders electronically, the minimum time limit for receipt of initial tenders can be 25 days.  The tools and devices used for electronic receipt of tenders must (amongst other things) ensure that no one can have access to the data transmitted before the deadline for receipt of tenders.

PIN notice
Where a PIN notice has been published at least 35 days and not more than 12 months prior to the publication of the actual contract notice on Find a Tender Service and which is not itself used as a means of calling for competition, the 30 days may be reduced to 10 days.

Sub central contracting authorities
Contracting authorities that aren’t central government can set the minimum time limit for tenders by agreement with tenderers.  In the absence of agreement minimum time limit is 10 days.

Standstill Period
After informing all participants of the outcome of the award decision, a period of 10 days must elapse before entering into the contract (15 days if the notice is not sent electronically).  The 10 days commence on the date the notice is sent to all participants and ends at midnight at the end of the 10th day after the relevant sending date.

Contract Award Notice
A contract award notice must be published on Find a Tender Service within 30 days of the contract award.  A contract award notice must also be published on Contracts Finder within 90 calendar days of the contract award date but not before publication of the Find a Tender Service contract award notice.