Department of Health

Procurement policies

Our arrangements for the supply of goods and services within the department are in accordance with the policies of the Victorian Government Purchasing Board (VGPB), including our Procurement Activity Plan (PAP).

  • The Victorian Government Purchasing Board’s policy framework places procurement as a core business function for all Victorian departments. These are listed below.

    Governance

    The governance structure embeds procurement across the organisation, and is consistent with all aspects of business planning.

    It encompasses a strong focus on upfront strategic planning and transparency to provide consistency of market approach and better value-for-money procurement decisions.

    Complexity and capability assessment

    Procurement decisions are based on an assessment of complexity and the capability to conduct the procurement. Procurement can only proceed when the department determines that it has the necessary capability to meet the complexity of the procurement activity.

    Market analysis and review

    Market analysis determines the capacity of the market to supply and the opportunities for market-based solutions. A review of requirements and processes in response to market analysis determines the most appropriate path to market.

    Market approach

    It is important for the government organisation to apply a structured, measured approach to informing, evaluating and negotiating with suppliers.

    Contract management and contract disclosure

    Contract management is escalated to a high-level consideration early in the planning process to arrive at an integrated end-to-end procurement framework.

  • We ensure that all procurement activity continues to meet the following VGPB principles.

    Provide:

    • Value for money:
      • a balanced judgement of a range of financial and non-financial factors, taking into account the mix of quality, cost and resources, fitness for purpose, total cost of ownership and risk.
    • Accountability: 
      • the Accountable Officer has the flexibility to conduct procurement activities using appropriate capability to provide value-for-money outcomes.
    • Probity: 
      • high standards of behaviour and actions in the conduct of procurement processes. This includes:
        • equity
        • confidentiality
        • avoiding conflicts of interest
        • consumer/supplier confidence in the integrity of government procurement processes.
    • Scalability: 
      • the relationship between the complexity of a procurement project, and the capability of the organisation to conduct it to achieve a good procurement outcome.
  • The VGPB's Governance Policy requires that departments publish a summary of procurement activities planned to be conducted over the forthcoming 12-18 months.

    This Procurement Activity Plan was last updated on 21 December 2022.

    The aim of the plan is to provide potential suppliers with an overview of the types of procurement activities (goods and services only) that we may undertake over this period. The plan will be updated from time to time to reflect other planned procurement activities.

    We also purchases a wide range of other goods and services which are not necessarily listed in the Procurement Activity Plan. These are purchased in accordance with government policy from existing whole of government State Purchase Contracts – refer to the State purchase contracts and registers.

    All planned procurement activities are subject to revision or cancellation. The information in this Procurement Activity Plan is provided for planning purposes only. It does not present a solicitation or constitute a request for proposal, nor is it a commitment by the Government to purchase the described goods or services.

  • Victoria’s Social Procurement Framework (SPF) was launched on 26 April 2018.

    The SPF helps government to use its buying power to generate social value above and beyond the value of the goods, services, or construction being procured. It does this by maximising social, economic, and environmental benefits for all Victorians and opportunities for Victorian jobs.

    The SPF puts social and sustainable outcomes at the centre of government procurement.

    Social Procurement Strategy 2022-23 applies to all procurement activities of our department, our agencies and portfolio administrative offices we support.

    It documents our social procurement implementation priorities and processes and is updated annually.

    Refer to the Social Procurement Strategy 2022-23 for further information.

  • We place a high level of importance on the way we conduct procurement processes and how we interact with the market.

    Complaints will be handled in a consistent, fair and transparent manner in accordance with the following process.

    A person with an issue or concern about a procurement process should first address their concerns to the relevant contact person for the process. If the issue or concern cannot be resolved, a complaint can be lodged with our Chief Procurement Officer as outlined below.

    Note: The complaint must relate to a procurement process issue. Matters of improper conduct, corruption or fraud should be directed our department's Secretary to be dealt with via other means.

    Step 1:  Complaint lodged and acknowledged

    The complaint should be in the form of a letter or email and including the following documentation:

    • a concise written statement clearly setting out the basis and specific details for the complaint.
    • how the subject of the complaint and the specific issues affect the person or organisation making the complaint.
    • any relevant background information including prior actions or correspondence involving our department in relation to the issue.
    • the outcome desired by the person or organisation making the complaint.
    • copies of all relevant documentary evidence supporting the complaint.

    Written complaints should be received within five working days of the complainant’s initial contact with the us regarding the complaint. Any delays are likely to adversely affect the timeliness of our response and any proposed remedial actions.

    All documents pertaining to the complaint should be sent by letter or email to the following address:

    • Chief Procurement Officer
      • Procurement Services
      • Department of Health
      • 50 Lonsdale Street
      • Melbourne VIC 3000

    Email procurement.services@dhhs.vic.gov.au

    Receipt of the complaint will be acknowledged by us within five working days of receipt.

    A designated investigation manager will be appointed who is not involved in the subject matter of the complaint and who has appropriate knowledge of procurement policies and relevant processes. The complaint will be recorded in our register.

    Step 2:  Complaint investigation process and timeline

    If information provided is sufficient then within twenty working days the complaint will be investigated, details recorded our register and response provided in writing to the complainant.

    If additional information is required, or the services of external parties are required to advise on elements of the complaint, there will be an extension of time. This will be based on the number of working days between the request for, and receipt of additional information and/or advice sought.

    Step 3:  Complaint outcome

    The complainant is provided with the complaint outcome in writing. The complaint investigation outcome is recorded in our register.

    Either the complainant accepts the finding or may refer their complaint to the Victorian Government Purchasing Board (VGPB) for review if not satisfied with the findings and actions of our department.

    This could be related to the management of the complaint or the application of supply policies. Find out more about the Victorian Government Purchasing Board.

    Complaints submitted to the VGPB must be lodged by letter or email within ten working days of the receipt of the findings by our department to the following address:

    • Victorian Government Purchasing Board
      • Department of Treasury and Finance
      • 1 Treasury Place
      • Melbourne VIC 3002

    Email vgpb@dtf.vic.gov.au

    The complainant must provide the VGPB with the following material:

    • evidence that we did not correctly apply supply policies in relation to a procurement activity
    • evidence that our complaints management procedures were not applied correctly
    • a copy of all relevant correspondence between the complainant and our department in relation to the nature of the complaint
    • any additional material requested by the VGPB to assist it in its findings.

    Other government bodies that may be able to assist include the:

    • Office of the Small Business Commissioner
    • Office of the Ombudsman.

Reviewed 21 December 2022

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