The department conducted its procurement activities in accordance with the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs).
We review the Accountable Authority Instructions periodically to ensure our procurement activities and related policy and procedural publications remain aligned with the CPRs and the Commonwealth procurement framework.
In 2014-15 the department continued to provide specialist procurement advice, training and assistance to staff undertaking procurements to ensure compliance with the CPRs—in particular, that they deliver value for money.
The department continued to contribute to the refresh and ongoing maintenance of a number of whole-of-government coordinated procurement initiatives led by the Department of Finance. The department also refreshed and maintained the arrangements that support the sourcing of communications-related services by 51 Australian Government agencies.
Procurement initiatives to support small business
The department supports small business participation in the Australian Government procurement market. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and small enterprise participation statistics are available on the Department of Finance’s website.
The department recognises the importance of ensuring that small businesses are paid on time. The results of the Survey of Australian Government Payments to Small Business are available on the Treasury’s website.
In undertaking its procurement activities, the department seeks to support SMEs through a range of measures including:
- the use of the Commonwealth Contracting Suite for low-risk procurements valued under $200,000
- implementation of a Supplier Diversity Strategy to increase the level of activity between the department and supplier groups such as Australian Disability Enterprises and Indigenous SMEs
- membership of Supply Nation, a non-profit organisation established to grow the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander business sector through the promotion of supplier diversity in Australia, to further the department’s activity within the Indigenous business sector. In May 2015 the department was recognised as the Supply Nation Government Member of the Year for leadership in supplier diversity and creating opportunities for Indigenous procurement.
- the use of Australian Industry Participation Plans in whole-of-government procurement where applicable
- encouraging the use of credit cards to expedite payments