An eAuction is an online auction where suppliers use internet-based software to bid against each other in real time against a published specification from the buying organisation.
eAuctions occur towards the end of the procurement process, after full evaluation of tenders have taken place. The procurement officer may conduct an eAuction based on price and/or values of features from the specification to identify most economically advantageous tender
When are eAuctions used?
Procurement officers will sometimes use eAuctions when:
- the requirement is of sufficient size to attract competition;
- the requirement can be accurately specified;
- the product or service is easily specified/compared e.g. office stationery;
- there is a competitive market
An eAuction can be used in conjunction with:
- The Open Procedure;
- The Restricted Procedure;
- Competitive Procedure with Negotiation;
- To conduct mini-competitions under a Framework Agreement;
- A Dynamic Purchasing System.
An eAuction may not be used:
- in public services or public works contracts whose subject matter involves intellectual performance, such as the design of works;
- to prevent, restrict or distort competition;
- for some services, for which it is not suitable, such as complex service contracts.
If a procurement officer intends to conduct an eAuction they will make that clear in the Contract Notice and details of the process will be included in the specification for the requirement.