How to use SBC Online
Signing up to SBC Online is quick and easy. All we need to set up your account is your school contact details and some basic information about the service that you wish to procure so we can prepare your procurement proposal and tender timeline. There is no obligation to accept our proposal until you have completed a Letter of Authority for Schools’ Buying Club to support you.
SBC Online is designed to provide school business professionals with a solution to manage procurements for complex and high value services in-house. Whilst you will ultimately be responsible for the tender, we will support you every step of the way; providing category advice, helping develop your service specification, running your tender through a secure portal ensuring compliance, responding to bidder clarifications, helping you evaluate the bids and assisting you to reach contract award with favourable contract terms and conditions already pre-agreed to protect your school.
Our support is remote, provided by qualified school procurement experts. This means that you will be responsible for gathering current contractual data, including TUPE workforce information, defining the specification, facilitating bidder days, evaluating bids and working with your chosen supplier to mobilise the new service. This sharing of responsibilities reduces the cost to run your tender. Whilst the SBC Online team is always on-hand to guide and support you, you will need fundamental procurement knowledge and the capacity to deliver these key aspects of the tender process.
Acting on your behalf
In order for Schools’ Buying Club to support you with your tender using SBC Online, you will need to agree to our terms and conditions and sign a Letter of Authority allowing us to act on your school’s behalf. The Letter of Authority will be included within your procurement proposal, created once you have provided information about your tender requirements. Until that point, you are under no obligation to accept our advice, use SBC Online or agree to our fees.
Working with you, Schools’ Buying Club will help formulate your specification of requirements to ensure the new service meets your school’s needs. We will create all relevant tender documentation including the evaluation methodology and bid scoring templates.
Schools’ Buying Club will administer the tender exercise ensuring compliance using the online portal. We will work with you through the tender process and respond to any clarifications and questions from bidders. If a bidder’s day, site visits or bidder presentations are required, Schools’ Buying Club will advise you on how to organise them to benefit you the most.
Supplier bid submissions will be compiled and presented for you to review. We will produce an evaluation matrix based on the scoring methodology agreed with you and will be on-hand to help clarify any questions that you may have about the bids and commercial terms before you make your decision of which supplier to appoint.
Schools’ Buying Club will inform successful/unsuccessful suppliers and provide high level feedback; you may be required to provide additional feedback or undertake supplier de-briefings.
Schools’ Buying Club will create the draft contract of services in-line with the Invitation to Tender documentation and suppliers’ subsequent responses. Any contractual amendments proposed will be discussed and agreed directly between you and your chosen supplier. We will be on-hand to provide guidance if required.
Schools’ Buying Club will not be responsible for ongoing contract management of the new service, but if any issues arise and a service review is required, we will happily support you and will provide a quotation for our service.
There are two ways to cover the cost of using SBC Online; you can do what most of our school and trust clients do which is include it within the service contract price so that there is no direct cost to you, or you can pay directly.
If you prefer that the cost is covered within the successful supplier’s contract price, we will agree the amount with you at the outset so that there is 100% transparency, and then we will charge the supplier on the commencement of the service. This can also cover the cost for SBC to manage an annual contract KPIs service review, where we will facilitate a meeting between yourselves and your supplier using a quality scorecard to review if standards are meeting expectations.
If you wish to pay directly, we will agree a fixed cost with you in advance, based on the type of service contract that you require, and your school type and site/ location circumstances. Schools that wish to collaborate to procure a new contract together, I.E within a MAT or local cluster will pay a lower procurement cost due to the efficiencies of running a single tender for multiple schools, and could also see greater savings.
If, at any stage, you decide that you need greater support from Schools’ Buying Club to run the tender process for you, we will be on-hand to help you and will provide you with a quotation for the additional work required.
Ongoing procurement support
If you wish to re-run the same tender exercise through SBC Online within five years, the cost will be reduced by 20%. You will be able to access all your previous tender documentation, making it easy to make any adjustments to your specification and re-run the exercise.
We will also help you complete a contracts register for all your services together with a procurement plan, and will alert you in good time so that you can run tenders without being forced to roll over contracts, ensuring that you are compliant and that you are always getting best value.
For a single school there will be a monthly fee of £25 for this service, which includes;
- Hosting your portal and securely storing your tender documentation
- A library of your performance service review reports and action plans
- Updating your contracts register and automatically alerting you to when you should start you next tender exercise
- Having up to date specifications for all categories
- Procurement advice and guidance for any purchase.
Discounts are available for multiple schools and MATs