Pre-qualification and pre-selection

In single-stage procedures, procuring entities invite suppliers to bid without submitting any prior information. Such procedures are straightforward to model in OCDS.

But, many jurisdictions also use multi-stage procedures. Such procedures follow a process like:

First stage

Second stage

  • The procuring entity issues an invitation to participate in the process

  • Suppliers submit requests to participate

  • The procuring entity assess suppliers based on their submissions

  • The procuring entity establishes a list of qualified or selected suppliers

  • The procuring entity issues an invitation to bid to the suppliers on the list

  • Suppliers submit bids

  • The procuring entity evaluates the bids

  • The procuring entity awards a contract to the successful supplier(s)

This worked example describes 3 types of multi-stage procedure and explains how to model them in OCDS.

Definitions

The term ‘pre-qualification’ describes different types of multi-stage procedure:

Pre-qualification with no limit on the number of qualified suppliers

The UNCITRAL Model Law on Public Procurement (2011) was developed through extensive consultation and so reflects the procurement practices and concepts used in many different jurisdictions. The UNCITRAL model law defines pre-qualification as a procedure to:

...identify, prior to solicitation, suppliers or contractors that are qualified.

The model law obliges procuring entities to publish an invitation to pre-qualify. The invitation needs to specify the criteria and procedure for assessing the qualifications of suppliers. Much of the information that would usually appear on an invitation to tender is provided on the invitation to pre-qualify.

The procuring entity assesses the qualifications of the suppliers based on their responses. Only pre-qualified suppliers can take part in the later proceedings.

Note

The European Union’s restricted procedure, competitive procedure with negotiation, competitive dialogue and innovation partnership use pre-qualification (see Articles 28-31, Directive 2014/24/EU).

Pre-qualification with a limit on the number of qualified suppliers (pre-selection)

The UNCITRAL model law defines pre-selection as a procedure to:

...identify, prior to solicitation, a limited number of suppliers or contractors that best meet the qualification criteria for the procurement concerned.

Pre-selection follows the same process as pre-qualification, with some additional requirements. The invitation to pre-qualify needs to specify how many suppliers the procuring entity will later request proposals from. The invitation also needs to specify how the procuring entity will select the suppliers to request proposals from.

Note

The European Union’s restricted procedure, competitive procedure with negotiation, competitive dialogue procedure and innovation partnership all permit the use of pre-selection (see Article 65, Directive 2014/24/EU).

Pre-qualification in Paraguay

In Paraguay, procuring entities can carry out a single pre-qualification for several tenders of the same nature (see article 22, law Nº 2.051/03). The details of this procedure will become clearer in the example below.

The OCDS model

In OCDS, a contracting process has a single competitive stage, the tender section. This represents the initiation of the process, when procuring entities invite suppliers to take part:

Planning

Planning

Tender

Initiation (Tender)

Award

Award

Contract

Contract

Implementation

Implementation


The tender section is also used to disclose information about the procedure used by the contracting process. In particular, the tender.procurementMethod field classifies the procedure using the following codelist:

Code

Title

Description

open

Open

All interested suppliers can submit a tender.

selective

Selective

Only qualified suppliers are invited to submit a tender.

limited

Limited

The procuring entity contacts a number of suppliers of its choice.

direct

Direct

The contract is awarded to a single supplier without competition.

Example: Pre-qualification

The Bank of England issues a restricted procedure contract notice to invite suppliers to pre-qualify for a tender to provide facilities management services.

The notice represents the initiation of the contracting process, so it is modelled using the tender section in OCDS:

{
    "id": "2019/S 040-090873",
    "description": "The Bank of England has a requirement for FM (M&E, security and cleaning) services at its site in Roehampton, SW15 5JQ.",
    "classification": {
        "scheme": "CPV",
        "id": "71300000"
    },
    "tenderPeriod": {
        "endDate": "2019-04-05T12:00:00Z"
    },
    "procurementMethod": "selective"
}

Any supplier can submit a request to take part in the first stage, but only qualified suppliers will be invited to submit a tender for the contract. Therefore, tender/procurementMethod is set to ‘selective’.

Note

OCDS does not currently provide a way to disclose information on the second stage of multi-stage procedures. The approach to modelling multi-stage procedures is under discussion on GitHub.

Contact the helpdesk if you want to disclose this type of information.

Example: Pre-selection

The National Nuclear Laboratory issues a restricted procedure contract notice to invite suppliers to pre-qualify for a project to update its physical security system arrangements.

The notice represents the initiation of the contracting process, so it is modelled using the tender section in OCDS.

The procuring entitiy will invite a maximum of 5 qualified suppliers to submit a tender at the next stage, so tender/procurementMethod is set to ‘selective’. The selectionCriteria extension is used to disclose the criteria for choosing which suppliers to invite proposals from.

{
    "id": "2020/S 014-028681",
    "description": "The NNL Preston Laboratory is located on the Springfields Fuels Ltd (SFL) site near Preston, Lancashire. NNL are carrying out their regulatory responsibilities as a Dutyholder to protect nuclear materials (NM) and other radioactive materials (ORM) from theft and sabotage by malicious threats. The facility operates under an approved nuclear site security plan in accordance with the Nuclear Industries Security Regulations (2003). This project is to further upgrade the physical protection system (PPS) arrangements at Preston Laboratory.",
    "classification": {
        "scheme": "CPV",
        "id": "35120000"
    },
    "tenderPeriod": {
        "endDate": "2020-02-17T12:00:00Z"
    },
    "procurementMethod": "selective",
    "selectionCriteria": {
        "criteria": [
            {
                "description": "The SSQ will be utilised. Responses to the SSQ will either be pass/fail, scored or for information only. The five top scoring suppliers will be taken through to award stage, following successful completion of a security audit. Further details can be found within the procurement documentation."
            }
        ]
    }
}

Example: Pre-qualification in Paraguay

The Ministry of Public Works and Communications issues an invitation for suppliers to pre-qualify for two tenders for road construction in different neighbourhoods. Each tender will re-use the list of pre-qualified suppliers established as a result of this first procedure.

The invitation represents the initiation of a contracting process to establish a list of pre-qualified suppliers, so it is modelled using the tender section in OCDS.

Only qualified suppliers will be invited to bid in subsequent tenders that use the list, so tender.procurementMethod is set to ‘selective’.

{
    "id": "2017-528",
    "title": "LLAMADO UEP ? MOPC N\u00b0 22/2017 EXPRESION DE INTERES SERVICIOS DE CONSULTOR\u00cdA PARA LA ELABORACI\u00d3N DE ESTUDIOS DE FACTIBILIDAD Y DISE\u00d1O FINAL DE INGENIER\u00cdA DE TRAMOS DE CAMINOS VECINALES EN LOS DEPARTAMENTO DE SAN PEDRO, CAAGUAZU, CANINDEYU, CAAZAPA Y GUAIRA",
    "tenderPeriod": {
        "endDate": "2017-06-29T10:00:00-04:00"
    },
    "procurementMethod": "selective"
}

Note

OCDS does not currently provide a way to disclose information on the second stage of multi-stage procedures. The approach to modelling multi-stage procedures is under discussion on GitHub issue.

Contact the helpdesk if you want to disclose this type of information.