Our procurement practices

As a public sector organisation, our procurement activity is guided by legislation and best practice.

The procurement route is determined by the potential total value of the contract, as detailed below:

- Less than £50k - the principals of adequate competition apply

- Greater than £50,000 (for goods and services) and £2million (for works) but below the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) thresholds (see below),  we are required to advertise our procurement activity on the Public Contracts Scotland (PCS) portal and on our own procurement pages.

- OJEU and above (for supplies and services greater than £181,302 and for works greater than £4,551,413)  - conducted in line with the Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015 and advertised in OJEU and also advertised on PCS.

We publish tenders on the Public Contracts Scotland website as above and potential suppliers are encouraged to register for free on this site. It will give you access to a large number of high and low value public authority contract opportunities across Scotland, not just those within our area. 

You can also view a list of our current contracts via the Contracts Register tab on HIE's Buyer Profile on PCS >

Read more +

Recent changes

The rules governing Public Procurement have been amended. From the 18 April 2016, the following rules/regulations apply:

  • Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015 – these are dictated to HIE from EU Directive 2014/24/EU
  • Procurement Reform Scotland Act 2014 (PRSA14) – The Act provided Ministers with powers to make Regulations and issue Statutory Guidance on a number of specified issues.  Ministers have introduced the ‘Procurement (Scotland) Regulations 2016’  and ‘Statutory Guidance’ on how some of the key elements of the Act should be implemented by HIE. 

Further information about changes likely to impact suppliers

Supplier Frameworks

The Scottish Government is actively supporting 'joined up' buying across the public sector, and currently tendering a number of contracts for use by all Scottish public sector organisations. As part of this collaborative approach, we are a member of Scottish Procurement which acts to improve and develop best practice in procurement for suppliers and buyers alike.

We may engage with suppliers via any of the Framework Agreements which have been implemented by Scottish Procurement or the Crown Commercial Services (on behalf of the public sector for the whole of the UK).

The method for us to engage with suppliers on these frameworks is prescribed with the usual route for multi supplier frameworks being via a mini competition between all the suppliers on that framework. There is therefore not only opportunity for suppliers to tender for these frameworks themselves once they are advertised but also to offer their services as subcontractors at the pre and post award stages of the procurement process.

These opportunities are advertised on various websites including PCS, Business Link, the national lower value contract opportunity portal and/or OJEU.

Approved Suppliers

We do not maintain their own register of approved suppliers, but suggest suppliers register for free with the PCS website. By doing so they will receive notification of contract opportunities, specific to their areas of expertise, from an ever growing number of public bodies in Scotland, including HIE.

Such notification not only covers lower value contract opportunities but also those above the OJEU threshold which appear in the European Journal.

We would also suggest that suppliers monitor various other procurement portals including the Crown Commercial Services and Scottish Procurement, to help them identify potential subcontracting opportunities, most of which will have dedicated supplier areas.