How does the Community Right to Challenge process work?

We want to make it as simple as possible for you to submit Expressions of Interest (EOI) where you think you meet the criteria to provide a service but we also have to work within our existing procurement frameworks. We have therefore decided that we will only consider applications in the months before the process to put in place a new contract begins.

Our three year procurement plan forms the basis of our timetable for consideration of EOI which provides two week windows for consideration of EOI twice every financial year.

We have adopted a two tier approach to reviewing EOI:

  1. An initial assessment - to judge whether the EOI meets the basic requirements of the statutory guidance. After this initial assessment we will notify those who have submitted EOI whether they have been accepted to proceed to the full assessment period or if they have been rejected as not meeting the basic criteria. We will publish the results of these assessments on our website once bidders have been notified.
  2. A full assessment - by an expert panel will then assess the viability of the EOI in line with the statutory guidance. There are three possible outcomes at this stage – accept the EOI, accept with modification (if this cannot be agreed with the bidder the EOI may be rejected) or reject. We will publish the results of these assessments on our website once bidders have been notified.

If we accept (even with modification) an EOI for a service, then we will carry out a procurement exercise to select the most appropriate service provider.

The minimum period between the date of our decision to accept an EOI and the date on which the procurement exercise will begin is 12 weeks. The maximum period is 52 weeks.

The time between the EOI acceptance and the procurement process starting provides additional time for the groups who submitted EOI to prepare to compete in the procurement exercise. This is one of the main benefits of Right to Challenge.

Updated: 7 April 2015