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Canadian Forum on Public Procurement Fairness Consultants: Their role, value-add, and types of projects where they are most suitable October 1 st, 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "Canadian Forum on Public Procurement Fairness Consultants: Their role, value-add, and types of projects where they are most suitable October 1 st, 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 Canadian Forum on Public Procurement Fairness Consultants: Their role, value-add, and types of projects where they are most suitable October 1 st, 2007

2 2 Introduction Auditor General’s Report Gomery Report Pressure groups Public perceptions and reactions Government obligations

3 3 Types of Fairness Roles Fairness Commissioner ~ means a resource that is mandated to provide the role of a Fairness Advisor, Fairness Monitor or Fairness Auditor. Where a third party Fairness Commissioner has not been assigned to a Project or procurement, typically the procurement undertake the role of Fairness Commissioner. Fairness Advisor ~ means an independent, neutral and objective observer who provides advice and reports on the aspects of fairness during each step of the procurement of goods and/or services. The Advisor is involved from the earliest stages of the procurement process, to providing a full report of the process at the conclusion.

4 4 Types of Fairness Roles Fairness Monitor ~ means an independent, neutral and objective resource who confirms that the process that has been adopted by the Client has been followed. They do not generally provide advisory services other than making determinations with respect to the application of code of conduct to internal and external project participants. At a minimum, they are involved in overseeing the evaluation process. Fairness Auditor ~ means an independent, neutral and objective resource who is involved in reviewing the procurement process after its completion. They are responsible for review all relevant documentation and information in order to certify that the process was conducted in a fair, open and transparent manner.

5 5 Fundamentals The role of Fairness Commissioner are based :  The notion of « public interest »  The value of impartiality, both explicit or implied  The application of the principles of impartiality  Transparency and openness  Climate of confidence and goodwill towards suppliers.

6 6 Key concepts Procurement processes balance outcome risk with process risk, in order to ensure that the public interest is served Process: Adhere to applicable legislation and policies Say what you are doing and then do what you said Consistently apply rules and parameters Implement processes that do not have a bias for firms or individuals Respect the confidentiality requirements Understand where the procurement process ends and ensure there is a clear framework for contract refinement and implementation Ensure the process is appropriately documented

7 7 Key concepts Outcome: Understand and set your objectives – know the desired outcome Recognize that competitive advantage does not mean unfair advantage Enable competitive pressure, by applying the right tools at the right time (vendor consultations, Expression of interest, Request for Qualification, Request for Proposals,, etc.) Provide complete and accurate information Provide an environment that permits exchanges in a through a thorough and structured process (if relevant) Focus on evaluation criteria Do sensitivity analysis to map out the possible outcomes BEFORE the proposals are received Be clear

8 8 Mandate The roles of Fairness Commissioner are carried out by impartial third parties whose mandate is to:  Provide the Contract Authority or Sponsor with assurances that the procurement processes and practices meet the highest standards  Confirm to external observers that the principles of fairness, objectivity, impartiality, clarity, openness and transparency are maintained throughout the process.

9 9 Role The primary function of a Fairness Advisor is one of pro- active review of the communications, documentation, evaluations and decisions related to the procurement of services to ensure:  Fairness  Objectivity  Transparency and  Adequate documentation of the processes and decision- making

10 10 Role (continued) Provide advice and rules of conduct on matters of fairness, transparency, ethics, conflicts of interest, vested interests, undue influence, commitments towards confidentiality, communications, etc. Review the Terms of Reference and their transposition into other documents, evaluation criteria and procedures to ensure the terms are clearly presented in an appropriate manner, that they are followed and relevant. Ensure that the evaluation conforms to the prescribed procedures and that they make appropriate use of assessment tools (stages, criteria, points)

11 11 Role (continued) Define the parameters and control the communications with the proponents to ensure consistency and transparency Provide advice on Best Practices Act as observer/facilitator, keep notes throughout the evaluation and comment on the process Participate in the information sessions and debriefings.

12 12 Role (continued) Ensure sufficient documentation of the process and the proper handling of the documentation Certify that the evaluation process was fair, open and transparent Ensure that the Project Team is aware of the Best Practices concerning communications, the principles of fairness and the handling of information.

13 13 Value Add The benefits of using an independent third party to review public sector projects are numerous :  Practice of Excellence  Support  Alignment of objectives with results  Assurance  Climate of confidence and reliability  Assistance at the « debriefing » for the unsuccessful proponents

14 14 Getting the right outcome by … Ensuring that sensitivity to the interests of a wide community of stakeholders is maintained Ensuring that the process can withstand scrutiny from auditors, political leaders, the press and the public, i.e. fairness, objectivity, impartiality, clarity, and openness and transparency has been maintained; Ensuring that the initiative results in the creation of a mutually beneficial relationship between the public and private sector where responsibilities, risks and rewards are appropriately allocated Ensuring that government and private sector interests in terms of accountability to citizens and shareholders / meeting citizen expectations about stewardship of public sector resources and services are aligned; and Ensuring that public policy interests are sustained throughout the full life cycle of the arrangement.

15 15 Tools Confirmation regarding no Conflict of interest Codes of conduct Training and information sessions on communications, evaluation, etc. Established processes to quickly route issues to the Fairness Advisor Checklists for the mandatory requirements Measures to ensure confidentiality (e.g. secure storage areas for bids or proposals) Commercially Confidential Meetings Document Repository System Guidelines to “level the playing field” in the event that there is an In-house bid

16 16 Most Suitable Procurements Politically sensitive projects or where there has been a significant amount of public interest Complex projects involving multiple stakeholders (e.g. P3s) Projects where the outcome can vary significantly from one submission to another Program of projects with a similar vendor pool Projects that involve an in-house bid Projects where the incumbent could be seen to have access to information that may provide them with an unfair advantage When the scope of work is perceived to be directed to one vendor Typically not advisable for acquisition of common goods or services

17 17 Contact Information Louise Panneton 86 Centrepointe Drive Ottawa ON K2G 6B1 Mobile: (613) 292-6262 Fax: (613) 723-9720

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