Argyll and Bute Council wants to make it easier for local businesses to win contracts to carry out work for the local authority.
The council’s policy and resources committee has agreed to expand its ‘supplier development programme, which, among other initiatives, provides a range of free tender training workshops for those interested in bidding for public contracts.
New ‘procurement surgeries’ are to be held in Rothesay and other towns in the area four times a year, and there are plans for a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event in connection with the regeneration of Rothesay Pavilion, the contract for which is expected to be awarded in spring 2016.
Council leader Dick Walsh, who is also the authority’s policy lead for customer support services, said: “There is an impression across the country that public sector contracts can only be won by big, national companies which employ their own procurement experts to fill in the forms, but that simply isn’t true.
“We awarded over a third of contracts to local companies last year; well above the national average of around one-fifth.
“We have a strong track record of engagement with the local business base and are committed to working even harder to make sure it is armed with the knowledge and expertise to make competent tender submissions for council contracts.
“We would encourage any local businesses interested in securing public sector contracts to get in touch with our procurement team, join the programme and book a place at one of the upcoming surgeries.”