As expected, the last few weeks of December saw a flurry of RFTs, RFIs and EOIs released to market as departments sought to achieve yearly targets and goals. So as we start a new year, its worth taking a quick look over December’s Approaches to Market to make sure nothing has been missed amidst end of year distractions.
As we start the new year with a pandemic still in the air and continuous uncertainty, the one thing you can be sure of is government spend across a wide range of industries. This week we take a broad brush review of the big areas of government procurement and some of the planned activity in that area.
Building, Construction & Civil Works: Touted as the industry that’s going to bring the economy back, government activity has always been high in construction and infrastructure and will continue to do so. Commonwealth agencies such as Defence, Defence Housing Australia and various museums and galleries constantly issue work packages for tender across the country. Some will identify a program pf work planned across the year, such as the Defence Estate Works Program. Beyond federal government contracts, state based activity in infrastructure has also increased and many local councils have recently received funding for local construction projects. So there is plenty of work to go around!
ICT: This is another area of continuous activity that has not been impacted by the pandemic. The key Commonwealth agency to keep a look out for is the Digital Transformation Agency who establishes whole of government panels across a wide range of categories and is suited to both large and small business. Some of these panels have set timeframes and deadlines, others remain open all year round such as the Digital Marketplace.
Management Advisory: This kind of work takes many forms and ranges from Scoping and feasibility studies, development of regulatory frameworks, risk and safety assessments or various departmental reviews. Opportunities in this space can come from any department seeking either independent or specialist advice and are issued all year round. This week sees opportunities from Department of Foreign Affairs, Australian Maritime Safety Authority and Director of National Parks.
Scientific Research, Goods and Services: The key Commonwealth departments issuing work in this space is the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). While some Approaches to Market are issued at state levels from time to time, the majority is issued through Commonwealth Agencies as the nature of the work tends to have national impact. Goods called for a highly technical and research topics are quite varied. Other departments that frequently issue work in this space are Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, and the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment.
Defence: Definitely where some of the high value contracts are placed – the Department of Defence. Putting aside the volume of construction work mentioned above, the Capability and Sustainment Group is the arm that issues the large military platform acquisition projects (ships, trucks, planes) as well as the sustainment contracts that are responsible for maintaining these platforms. While it may seem that this is work only for the Primes, plenty of opportunities also exist for SMEs both as direct tenderers or as part of a Prime’s supply chain.