Business plan

CCS “levels the playing field” with a new business plan for SMEs

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Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has released its first SME Action Plan, which will now “level the playing field” for SMEs

The new plan sets guidelines for how CCS meets the UK government’s overall intention to level the playing field for SMEs.

This follows the update of the “Guide to Selling to Government” in December 2021, giving SMEs essential information.

Richard Denney, Director of Corporate Pillar at CCS, said: “At the time of publication of this action plan, our country is in the process of recovering from the coronavirus pandemic and most sectors of the UK economy are suffering. seriously.

“Economic recovery continues to be crucial to the prosperity of our nations, and SMEs will play a huge role in this.”

Some of the new guidelines include:

  • A target for the government to pay 90% of bills within 5 days and all within 30 days
  • All opportunities over £10,000 posted on Contracts Finder
  • Any supplier bidding on a CG contract over £5m per annum must demonstrate that they have effective payment systems in place to ensure a reliable supply chain

Three quarters of CCS agreements are SMEs

Currently, only three-quarters of CCS business deals are with SMEs, but they only receive about 13% of total spend directly. While many are subject to “indirect” spending, via larger suppliers who use them as subcontractors, direct spending is still the issue of the moment.

Compared to 2019/20, direct spending with SMEs under CCS agreements increased significantly by £392m in 2020/21, reaching £2.5bn in total.

“Evening the playing field” will increase economic and social benefits

Richard Denney added: “SMEs bring diversity and innovation to our supply chains, and leveling the playing field for businesses of all sizes will bring economic and social benefits and help the UK build back better and fairer.

“Our action plan sets out the work we do to ensure that we continuously create these opportunities, helping our customers increase the value provided by their purchases.”

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