Response to consultations on proposals for arrangements from April 2023

Consultation approach and themes

Our two consultations set out proposals for key characteristics of the procurement strategy. The questions used in the two consultation documents deliberately included some slight differences to reflect the differing perspectives of the respective groups but the same core areas were covered. In addition, the consultation with eligible bodies sought their feedback on our proposals for scheme membership, whilst the consultation with the market sought its feedback on more detailed points of the procurement strategy given its special relevance to that group.

The consultation on the draft prospectus contained 11 questions (the answer format was generally “yes / no / maybe” with the option to provide supporting comments). The market engagement consultation contained 19 questions (the answer format invited comments and opinions). Across both consultations, all questions were optional.

For ease of reference, the question themes are sub-divided into these three groupings:

Themes covered in the consultation with eligible bodies, other stakeholders, and the market

  • Prioritisation to award new longer-term contracts
  • Duration of audit services contract
  • Tender evaluation ratio
  • Market sustainability
  • Approach to social value within the procurement
  • Timeliness of audit opinion delivery

Themes only covered with eligible bodies and other stakeholders

  • Duration of scheme membership (duration of the appointing period)
  • Potential to introduce minimum audit fees
  • Specific benefits of the national scheme
  • Key issues which will influence your decision about scheme membership
  • Indication of whether or not you anticipate that your organisation is likely to opt into our scheme

Themes only covered in the market engagement consultation

  • Procurement aim and objectives
  • Procurement route
  • Establishment of a Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS) in parallel for future use
  • Lot structure, composition, and size
  • Basis for pricing and ways to seek to reduce bidder uncertainty
  • Indicative procurement timetable
  • Key factors most likely to influence your firm’s decision to bid
  • Other issues

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