How good are local authorities at awarding contracts to SMEs and VCSEs

How good are local authorities at awarding contracts to SMEs and VCSEs

Posted by Admin on 29 January 2020

At the National Social Value Conference 2020 we presented our league table of local authority social value procurement. Enter your details below to download the full report.

The UK public sector is the biggest customer in the country, spending almost £300bn per year on procurement of goods and services.


In recent years, the government has become increasingly focused on ensuring its procurement is not only good value for money, but produces 'social value' as well. Social value can be defined as taking into account the wider economic, social and environmental effects of your actions. In 2012 the government passed the 'Social Value Act', which requires contracting authorities to consider how its procurement of services could improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of the relevant area.




Procurement through voluntary organisations and social enterprises (VCSEs), through small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and through local organisations, is often thought to bring more social value than procurement through large private companies.


We have often highlighted that Local Government is considerably better at awarding contracts to SMEs and VCSEs, and this continues to be the case. But some local authorities are much better than others. Our report ranks local authorities by their performance on social value procurement last financial year, to provide a benchmark against which to measure progress in the years to come.


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