Government departments work together on contracts for the digital age


The Government Digital Service (GDS) is working with Crown Commercial Service (CCS) and Government Legal Department (GLD) to simplify the procurement process, a new blog post on the Digital Marketplace website has revealed.

As well as simplifying the process for potential suppliers, the collaboration is also being designed to make procurement suitable for digital access. This isn’t the first time the departments have worked together – last year GDS and CCS started work on shorter contracts for digital services that used less ‘lawyer speak’.

The blog post, co-authored by Jason Waterman from CCS and Warren Smith, head of strategy for the Digital Marketplace, said that a network of ‘contract champions’ will contribute to the work, which it’s hoped will help the GDS work towards its goal of creating an open standard for public procurement.

Central to the plan is a multi-department team that will provide a template for contracts that are easily accessible online.

“Since our first attempt at a contract that puts the user first, we’ve been looking into how a user-centred, design-led approach could be applied to meet the needs of a much wider group of contract users across government,” the post said.

“We’ll work with the GDS design principles and agile delivery in mind. Working and thinking in this new way will help the CCS policy team to deliver government contracts for the 21st century, as well as better practices in commercial law.

“This is an important part of the plan to become a government that’s designed for the digital age.”

The model terms and conditions will be constantly updated according to user feedback and analytics, the post added.

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