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11 November 2011 |
New guidance on construction procurement has received a lukewarm
response from one senior buyer. According to Rob Douglas, retail support
purchasing director at Dixons Retail, the BSI Group’s construction
procurement standard may benefit immature purchasing functions, but most
purchasers are unlikely to find the standard valuable.
He said: “The guidance
covers the basics of buying. Its effectiveness would depend on the maturity of
the purchasing organisation that is buying. Basic advice like this could add
value for an SME or a less mature buying organisation. We wouldn’t follow it
because we have our own internal guidance, which is more detailed about the
processes we should follow. A CIPS professional would not find it valuable
since they should already be implementing best practice in their procurement
The BSI Group launched its procurement standard, BS 8534:2011 – Construction procurement
policies, strategies and procedures – Code of Practice yesterday, to remind buyers of best practice
purchasing steps required when buying construction work.
The BS 8534:2011 gives buyers guidance on issues
including the definition of roles, responsibilities and accountabilities for
the procurement programme. It also tells buyers that when facing a skills gap,
they should gain external expert advice
on how to meet the business need and also define a procurement project’s contribution
to strategic objectives.
BS 8534:2011 was developed following
the 'Rethinking Construction Standards' workshop series sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation &Skills.
The standard was developed in response to the construction
industry’s demands for more consistency in the way their work is procured.
Jonathan Griffin, head of market development at BSI said: “BSI
strongly believes that the construction industry will benefit from the
introduction of a high-level best practice framework in this area since it will
eliminate wasteful processes in design, procurement and construction.”
standard costs £182.00 and can be bought from the BSI online shop.