Last edited 15 Dec 2020

Market health and capability assessment

The Construction Playbook, Government Guidance on sourcing and contracting public works projects and programmes Version 1, produced by the Cabinet Office and published in December 2020, is focused on getting projects and programmes right from the start. Its principles and policies are intended to transform how public works projects and programmes are assessed, procured and managed. It is a ‘compact’ between government and industry, setting out how they will work together in future.

It states:

‘Healthy, competitive markets matter because they support our ability to achieve value for money for taxpayers.

‘Good market management is about looking beyond individual contracts and suppliers. It is about designing commercial strategies and contracts that promote healthy markets over the short, medium and long term.

‘All public works projects should include an assessment of the market early on during the preparation and planning stage. This should include a consideration of the available skills, capabilities and capacity of the market, and an assessment of barriers to entry and market concentration. These assessments should then be used to:

  • ‘identify potential opportunities and limitations in the market
  • ‘take advantage of effective new technologies and innovation
  • ‘consider what actions would increase competition and improve market health, including strengthening skills and capability

‘Market health assessments for individual projects and programmes should form part of a wider ongoing market strategy. Contracting authorities can request access to supplementary market intelligence collected by commercial teams in the Cabinet Office and Crown Commercial Service (CCS). Advice can also be sought from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in relation to more complex or substantial competition issues.’

For more information see: The Construction Playbook.

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