SMEs play a vital role in supplying goods and services and the increased services and innovation they bring helps the public sector to deliver world-class public services that are value for money. Small supplier deliver significant benefits to the public sector through their innovation, flexibility and social value, and at a comparatively lower cost base than large, incumbent government contractors.
Healthy, resilient and diverse local supply chains are critical for driving productivity, financial strength and the efficiency of small and large firms alike, as well as enabling the delivery of greater social value.
One of the greatest challenges facing SMEs in the UK and throughout Europe is finding customers. For the small and micro business that make up 95% of the UK’s 5.5 million SMEs, part of this battle comes from not understanding or fully appreciating the complexities of larger supply chains, the various statutory and corporate requirements to become a part of them, the procurement process and jargon, and how to better identify, assess and complete tender and bid opportunities.
The public sector spends £200bn on procurement every year, yet in 2017 only 23% of procurement contracts awarded were advertised, marked or identified as suitable for SMEs with up to 250 employees, let alone smaller suppliers.
In 2017, YTKO was awarded a contract by London Borough of Tower Hamlets to deliver a new service, Supply Ready, to help SMEs in the region with their supply chain ambitions, whether through public sector tendering or selling their services and producers to larger businesses.
The two year project has now concluded, and we are proud to have helped businesses win over £10m new contracts within the life of the project, with at least the same amount again in their collective bid pipeline.
YTKO CEO, Bev Hurley said “Supply Ready was designed to go beyond the stale “Meet the Buyer” format, and properly equip smaller businesses to be able to compete more effectively in formal procurement situations. High quality, hands on, practical support, including helping SMEs to find and build relationships with key supply chain contracts, led to this great result. I am also delighted that over 300 clients have already won more than one contract.”
The Supply Ready service helped businesses to understand, and be able to effectively address, the risks to the buyer; taught them how to determine whether a bid is worth going for; what policies and procedures they need; how to write a compelling tender; the differences between public and private sector bidding; where to find appropriate opportunities, and much more. Embedded within our GetSetforGrowth service which accelerates the growth and development of small businesses, Supply Ready support was delivered through practical workshops to learn new skills, business networking events, and 1:1 coaching from our procurement specialists. SMEs also were provided with free access to our GrowSmart learning portal which provides a wealth of structured learning and resources on managing growth, including strategy, HR, marketing, sales and finance.
If you’d like to know more about how to unlock your SMEs growth potential through supply chain readiness, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0800 121 4458