Procurement Officers can advertise their intention to tender future planned procurements by publishing a Prior Information Notice (PIN) on Public Contracts Scotland.
The PIN can be published up to twelve months in advance of the actual procurement exercise taking place and will contain some basic information regarding the goods or services to be purchased.
In the vast majority of cases, publishing a PIN is not a mandatory requirement for the public body but it can alert the market that there is an opportunity coming up within the next 12 months, allowing you to research and start to prepare your bid. They are a useful source of information for Understand the Market. It can also make it possible for the procurement officer to reduce the timescales needed to complete the procurement exercise.
In most cases public bodies will follow up the publication of a PIN with a Contract Notice (advert) when they are ready to carry out the procurement exercise.
PINs can be found via “Browse Notices” in Public Contracts Scotland, and then selecting “Future Opportunity” as the Notice Type and then selecting “search” as per below:
Your search will then provide a list of PINs, which you can select and look at in more detail.
Public bodies which are not part of central government or the National Health Service are allowed to use a PIN as a call for competition in some circumstances. This means that no additional Contract Notice will be published at a later date.
If the PIN is to act as a call for competition, this will be clearly stated in the PIN on Public Contracts Scotland and you must register your interest to receive updates.