Unlocking the UK central government’s digital future: A roadmap for technology suppliers in 2024
Guest blog by Dilem Tekan, Growth Associate at Stotles, on key insights from their latest report: 'Central Government Procurement Pipeline' which will be presented at our upcoming webinar on 11 December.
Public sector sales-enablement tool Stotles has analysed £8.9b digital contracts published across central government pipelines to help suppliers anticipate opportunities emerging from CDDO’s “2022 to 2025 roadmap for digital and data”.
This exclusive study offers a unique window into the central government's digital procurement strategy, so that suppliers can:
- Navigate the procurement calendar: Anticipate when relevant contracts will hit the market and when they will be awarded.
- Identify top procurement sectors: Understand which digital services are in demand and strategically position your company.
- Target popular routes to market: Uncover the breakdown between frameworks, tenders & DPSs and discover the most important commercial agreements.
- Explore buyer roadmaps: Gain in-depth insights into ministries' digital priorities and strategic investments, enabling you to identify and target key accounts.
With the help of these insights, you will be well-equipped to position your company to capitalise on major upcoming contracts and shape your central government strategy for 2024 and 2025.
This preview blog offers the first section, below. To access the complete study, download the full Stotles report here.
Navigating the procurement calendar
Each April, central government ministries must publish procurement pipelines. These pipelines reveal anticipated contracts expected for over the next eighteen months and, in best practice, up to five years in the future. Each contract is published with an estimated procurement start date and an estimated contract start date. Understanding these deadlines are crucial for planning your sales strategy.
Using data from April 2023 pipelines, we've analysed 370 digital contracts to create a procurement calendar and help you effectively time your approach in 2024.
When do digital contracts go to market?
Our analysis reveals that Q2 and Q3 of 2023 were the most popular dates for digital contracts to begin procurement processes, with 106 contracts valued at £1.96b published in this period.
How long is the procurement process?
The typical procurement cycle for these major contracts range from 3 to 18 months. In the early stages, buyers focus on defining their requirements, which may include issuing Prior Information Notices (PINs) and collaborating with suppliers to refine the process.
With the majority of the pipeline already in the procurement phase, it's vital for suppliers to focus on contracts beginning their procurement process in Q4 2023 or beyond. Moreover, with pipeline updates in April 2024 expected to unveil new opportunities for that year, staying informed of these developments is crucial for suppliers.
When are digital contracts awarded to suppliers?
The previous graph visualised pipeline contracts by procurement start date, helpful for suppliers’ planning their sales pipeline. We now turn to contract start date to understand how many of these major contracts are expected to be awarded in 2024.
Across central pipelines, 121 contracts worth a combined £2.5b are expected to start in 2024. For suppliers looking to win major contracts next year, we recommend focusing on these contracts which are early in the procurement cycle and have not yet selected a supplier. These contracts represent the most competitive opportunities for new suppliers.
Stotles strategic recommendations
Based on our analysis above, we believe there are three key approaches successful suppliers must adopt to have a chance at winning major central government contracts. These include:
1. Early engagement:
- The data suggests a strategic advantage in targeting contracts that are in the early stages of procurement, particularly those initiating in late 2023 but starting well into 2024.
- These represent opportunities where suppliers still retain a competitive chance against incumbents.
2. Forward planning
- For long-term success, spend 2024 focusing on 2025.
- Within our dataset, we've already identified 24 digital contracts worth a combined £1.1b are expected to start in H1 2025
- Identify which of those contracts are going to market in 2024 and engage with buyers well ahead of contract start date.
3. Staying informed:
- Regular updates from Stotles, especially around the upcoming April 2024 pipeline update, are vital.
- The updated central government pipeline will highlight new opportunities for the latter part of 2024 and early 2025.
The remainder of the report offers detailed insights into:
- Top procurement sectors: Understand which digital services are in demand and strategically position your company.
- Popular routes to market: Uncover the breakdown between frameworks, tenders & DPSs and discover the most important commercial agreements.
- Buyer roadmaps: Gain in-depth insights into ministries' digital priorities and strategic investments, enabling you to identify and target key accounts.
Register: How to unlock Central Government procurement in 2024: trends, strategies, and success stories
Join us on Monday, 11 December from 11am - 12:30pm as we host a webinar exploring Central Government Procurement trends, strategies and success stories in 2024. Stotles will be presenting data and insights outlined in this report titled, ‘Central Government Procurement Pipeline’ on central government’s combined procurement pipeline. The focus will be on key sectors for investment, prevalent framework usage, and the balance between repeat and new procurements.
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