The NSW Department of Finance and Services is introducing a pilot rating system across three ICT panels, to commence before 1 September 2013.
“The NSW Government will pilot buyer satisfaction ratings in the NSWBuy eQuote system to provide information on ratings by buyers to help other Government buyers in selecting industry suppliers,” said Finance Minister Andrew Constance.
Under the voluntary pilot, agencies will be encouraged to submit “online satisfaction surveys” for goods and services procured through:
- The ICT Services Scheme;
- ITS 2573 for Operational Telecommunications Equipment, Infrastructure and Services; and
- The Performance and Management Services prequalification scheme.
The pilot program will ask agencies to rate suppliers based on provided survey questions, as well as giving them an overall rating, which will be visible to other Government agencies.
“This will lead to better purchasing decisions and value for money for the taxpayer,” said Constance.
“We encourage agencies and suppliers to embrace and support the project to help provide more information on services being offered to Government.
“It will also make it easier for agencies to consider smaller, lesser known companies that have previously met buyer expectations.”
The initial stage of the pilot will largely involve the collection, management and display of ratings.
The ITS 2573 scheme has already had a rating system since its establishment earlier this year, with all buyers required to complete feedback forms on supplier performance. The forms are then reviewed by a Panel Committee, which has the power to temporarily suspend suppliers for up to three months on the basis of unsatisfactory feedback.
Although the new pilot system has only introduced straightforward ratings at this early stage, the ITS 2573 rating system may indicate the future model for all ICT purchasing arrangements in the NSW Government.
A general trend towards the adoption of rating systems for whole-of-government panels and agreements is appearing across the country in different forms.
Under Western Australian common use agreements, agencies have the option of submitting performance reviews to individual contract managers.
The Queensland Government has also taken the first steps towards introducing supplier evaluations as part of a detailed contractor management framework and system.
“Feedback from both industry and government was that ratings are inherently subjective and could potentially be damaging,” according to the Register’s information page.
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