The do’s and don’ts of G-Cloud shortlisting
Suppliers hoping to make a success of G-Cloud need to understand how buyers procure their services compliantly. Part of this is knowing what buyers can and can't ask...
Whilst the lure and excitement of a big contract might make this seem irrelevant, if another shortlisted supplier decided to mystery shop that organisation they can say bye-bye to that contract…
What can buyers ask you?
Buyers can only contact you regarding what is in your listing. This includes:
- Clarifying pricing and what is included in the pricing document. For instance, if you have listed your service in dollars and the buyer wants to procure in pounds, they may reach out to you to see if this is possible.
- To get more information about what is included in your Service Definition, such as asking for contact reference from a previous public sector case study.
- Confirming the benefits and features of the service that are detailed in your front-end listing. For example, if you say you offer a customisable API but in fact that feature is only available at extra cost, but you didn’t mention that!
- To ask any questions regarding your Terms and Conditions. Most of these queries are related to terms that seem to contradict or even conflict with the framework agreement. An overly cautious buyer may contact you to confirm that something won’t come back to bite them later on.
- And, finally to simply double check that what you have outlined in your overall listing matches what they’re after.
What can’t they ask you?
- Buyers cannot carry out further competition on G-Cloud. Buyers can evaluate multiple suppliers in one of two ways:
One, is to choose the supplier that meets the needs and that has the lowest price.
Two, and more likely to be used, is the M.E.A.T process or the most economically advantageous tender. This is where a buyer will evaluate multiple suppliers (usually around 3-5) against a set of predetermined criteria.
- Ask a supplier to bid, tender or submit a proposal.
- They can’t negotiate with pricing or ask for massive discounts (if these are not detailed in your pricing document and aren’t available to every buyer).
- Ask you to supply anything that is not detailed in your listing, including any hardware.
- Buyers can’t ask you to change your service (as described in the listing) to meet their requirements.
To summarise, there’s not a lot that buyers can ask a supplier! If it isn’t in a supplier’s listing, they can’t ask you about it. We suggest reading CCS’ Buyers Guide to get further insight into how G-Cloud works for buyers and to better understand how they evaluate suppliers.