Case study: ‘The bidding process is so cumbersome I gave up’

GUS Mackay has four decades of experience as a quantity surveyor in South Lanarkshire, but after repeatedly being outbid by bigger companies, he says he no longer applies for contracts in public sector procurement projects.

The 58-year-old said that despite his experience, he has had a success rate of about one in 20 during the past five years, when he has submitted bids for contracts in the building of health centres and local council premises. The process is just so cumbersome for smaller firms and there are so many forms that have to be completed before you even get to talk about the job of work you want to do,” he said.

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“It all seems to be geared towards helping the bigger construction firms, who nearly always win the biding process.

“At one stage I used to be quite successful at getting bids accepted for public projects, but then I found I had about a one in ten chance of getting the work.“Then it was a one in 20 chance and I was repeatedly turned down for work, even though my firm has a good reputation in the area.”

Mr Mackay added: “Someone really has to look at how we can simplify the process for smaller Scottish firms, as the system is currently too prohibitive.”