Sourcing Specialists: Sourcing the MEAT in Procurement

15th February 2022

Find the MEAT with Sourcing Specialists

Do you want to learn about procurement from Sourcing Specialists? At Hudson Procure, we’re experts in procurement and want to help your business through the procurement process.

In this blog, we’ll help you source the MEAT when finding suppliers for your projects. Keep reading to find out more…

What is the MEAT?

Procurement is defined as the action of obtaining or procuring something. It’s basically another term for buying or purchasing.

At Hudson Procure, we have one goal. Through a range of services, we help buyers with their purchasing efforts.

Purchasing or ‘procuring’ is no easy task, especially in the public sector. To ensure you remain fair and transparent with expenditure, you must source the MEAT.

MEAT stands for the most economically advantageous tender. Basically, with this method, buyers are searching for the highest quality services for the lowest price.

How to source the MEAT

So, how do you actually source the MEAT? Luckily for you, our Sourcing Specialists are on hand to help!

We’ve mentioned a few points below which helps you source the MEAT in the best possible way…

  • Be clear and set the guidelines

As we know, public buyer documents are now predominantly released via an electronic portal. This is where you disclose all of the information relating to WHAT you require and HOW you wish to acquire. Usually, this is done via an ITT.

This could be in many different shortlisted stages including, but not limited to:

  • Pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ)
  • Invitation to tender (ITT)
  • Request for proposal (RFP).

Whatever the process is – this should be clearly advertised on the Instructions provided by you (the buyer).

Once you have released an opportunity, you need to ensure that suppliers know and understand your evaluation criteria. For example, will it be based on 60% quality and 40% cost?

To make sure that suppliers understand the evaluation criteria, you should include a dedicated section in the ITT. This is particularly important for larger tenders, so there are no major variances in supplier responses. As a result, you can award the work to the supplier who demonstrates everything in accordance with that specific guidance.

This works in tandem with the other relevant documents you have released/published, including ITT instructions, specifications and other affiliated content.

  • Be prompt with clarifications

When a clarification question comes in, be prompt in your response to all suppliers. This allows everyone to act in an efficient timeframe, so their responses aren’t hindered by last minute changes. As a result, you’ll receive higher quality responses from prospective suppliers.

On an average 4-week tender process, you may receive one clarification question from potential suppliers, or you may receive 100. This all depends on how ‘smart’ the tender has been put together.

We always say that more clarifications asked by suppliers during the process means lack of clarity imposed by the buyer.

Why would a tender process have over 50 clarification questions if the ITT was deemed to be clear and cohesive? This would suggest that clarity and cohesiveness have been overlooked. Especially if the supplier is struggling to understand what’s in front of them.

In a lot of cases, this is where buyers fall down.

To avoid this, make sure that every word in your specification is clear and easy for suppliers to understand.

If you need help in this area, get in touch with one of the Sourcing Consultants at Hudson Procure!

  • Show complete fairness and transparency with your evaluation

It’s very important to remain fair and unbiased when evaluating supplier responses.

One way of doing this is to have one dedicated reviewer for each section of all ITTs from suppliers. This should be someone who has been fully briefed on what’s needed for the project.

This then focuses more on the individual responses to each section, rather than a supplier’s response as a whole. The individual doing this can focus on the calibre of responses for one section and compare this across the board. It’s more manageable and favouritism remains minimal.

Remember: always use the guidance you have released as gospel.

Never steer away from your guidance or this could lead to disputes and objections. It never looks great if you have multiple suppliers disputing your methods, after all!

  • Provide clear and justifiable feedback!

If your evaluation guidance is detailed, this next step will be simple.

Make it crystal clear to the percentages or marks provided, as this gives a quantifiable output to the supplier. This allows them to digest how far away they were and on what sections improvements need to be made.

Our Sourcing Specialists advise that you provide quantitative feedback alongside every contract you award. This helps to ensure that suppliers understand the reasoning to why they were or were not considered the most advantageous. Sometimes it may come down heavily on cost, sometimes it may come down heavily on quality. Make this known to suppliers – especially the suppliers who didn’t succeed. That way, they can pull up their ‘bid boots’ and move onto the next one with confidence.

Here at Hudson Procure, our Sourcing Specialists are here to help you through the procurement process. We work with you to ensure your processes remain fair, transparent, in line with the relevant regulations. All in all, we’ll help you secure the MEAT for your business!

In summary

MEAT stands for most economically advantageous tender. In simple terms, this means the best quality goods and services for the lowest cost.

To source the MEAT, you need to set clear and cohesive guidelines. Make sure you answer any and all clarification questions in full. It’s also really important that you remain fair and transparent when evaluating tender responses. And remember, it’s always a good idea to provide unsuccessful suppliers with helpful, constructive feedback.

How can Hudson Procure help your business?

At Hudson Procure, our procurement experts have nearly two decades of experience. No matter what kind of support you’re looking for, we can help.

Procure Consult

With Procure Consult, we offer support with tender management and ad-hoc procurement consultancy. Our expert team will manage the end-to-end procurement process or offer assistance with any stage, as and when required. 

Procure Health Check

With Procure Health Check, we’ll conduct a full review of the strategic and operational procurement processes within your organisation. We’ll identify the areas that need improvement and help you drive greater value from the procurement process. 

Procure Analyse

The purpose of Procure Analyse is to conduct a high-level analysis of your spending activity. We’ll help you understand your current purchasing behaviour and highlight areas that can deliver greater value. Procure Analyse is also offered as part of Procure Health Check or as a standalone service. 

Procure Outsourcing

With Procure Outsourcing, we deliver a range of procurement solutions on an outsourced basis, completely bespoke to you. This can range from delivering multiple tender projects as a package to delivering the full procurement function of your organisation. 

Procure Post

Are you trying to find a supplier for your project? Post your tendering opportunity onto any of our 11 sector-specific portals for FREE with Procure Post!

Housed by our sister company, Hudson Discover, our portals host thousands of tendering opportunities for organisations of all sizes. We’ll help you identify your requirements and find the most suitable suppliers for your business.

Get in touch for a consultation and find out how we can help your business grow.

Check out our other blogs for further Procurement Insights:

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