Pre-Qualification Questionnaire

Are you using standard pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ) to identify the most suitable suppliers to invite to tender for contracts?. PQQ, widely used in the Public Sector, was a strong recommendation on how public sector bodies can improve small & medium sized enterprises (SMEs) access to the Government marketplace. Actually, PQQ brings – if used properly – transparency on knock-out criteria used to pre-select and invite suppliers to tender. The PQQ asks simple questions to establish suppliers’ suitability to tender against the requirement. A PQQ serves the purpose of fairly reducing the number of competing suppliers to a manageable number. This is particularly appropriate where buyers anticipate that a large number of suppliers are likely to want to bid. Even if there are as more PQQ as there are companies, they are usualy build based on a similar canvas:

  • Organisation Identity and Basic Details
  • Financial Information
  • Business Activities
  • References
  • Insurance
  • Quality Assurance
  • Health and Safety
  • Equal Opportunities
  • Environmental Management
  • Professional & Business Standing
  • Requirement Specific Questions

I will not reinvent the wheel. You can find everything needed about PQQ, as well as templates, on the famous (on this side of the planet!) UK OGC website (Office of Government Commerce), which I have to recommend once again. There, you will find a basic PQQ, to be adapted to your needs, an accompanying guidance for completion of the PQQ (for suppliers) and an evaluation guide of submitted PQQs (for purchasers). Just great.
Additional consideration

  1. PQQ is very suitable to be executed online, especially when the e-Application you are using enables you to compare results in a table (as excel). It’s really nothing else than a e-RFi, but focused on pre-identifying the best suppliers to be invited and on rejecting the ones not compliant with your must-have requirements.
  2. When sourcing for new suppliers, in low cost country for example, it is an abstract of a PQQ that you would be using. PQQ comes after a market-scan activity
  3. PQQ can be (is) very time consuming. Some companies have understood it and offer to their customers a PQ database (a database where PQ data from suppliers have already been collected), usually specific to a market and/or to a region. It saves time and money for both suppliers and buyers. I’m thinking here about Achilles Group in UK, present in 18 countries and specific to the Utilities vertical market but growing now outside of this industry (looking after the promising Pharmaceutical market for example) ; I’m thinking as well about FirstIndex (US), specialised on the manufacturing industry and leaded by John Yung, who, guess what, worked some times ago for… Achilles. I will come back later on those providers and their – very interesting business model. That’s all for now.

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