Over 1700 participants attended this year’s DPRTE Engage virtual conference.
With over 65 sessions and 115+ exhibition booths, there was a lot to learn on the day about defence procurement.
Although there were a number of discussion points throughout the day, one thing that was clear is that the defence marketplace offers significant opportunities.
The impact of COVID-19
The military has been doing everything it can to protect its troops and the nation in the fight against Coronavirus.
The military’s response to COVID-19 is ongoing, and defence bodies are ensuring that every measure is being taken to ensure its personnel are protected from the virus.
The defence supply chain was heavily involved in the delivery of personal protective equipment (PPE) supply chains, while the Armed Forces formed a COVID Support Force, which played play a key role in helping with NHS logistics, manning emergency call centres and setting up mobile testing centres.
Speaking at DPRTE Engage, Andrew Forzani, Chief Commercial Officer, UK Ministry of Defence, examined what lessons the defence industry could learn from the pandemic. At the event Mr Forzani explained:
“One of the key messages that came back from industry right from the beginning was the importance of industry having confidence that business would continue during this period. Contracts would continue to be awarded; programmes would continue wherever possible; money would keep flowing; payments would still be made and cashflow would not stop.
“What was really important to the MOD was that if we were going to make pre or part payments on the supply chain into the Primes, that it flowed down into all levels of the mid-tier and into SMEs.”
In these unprecedented times, new and existing suppliers in defence procurement can play an instrumental role in driving public services, local authorities, and the Government itself forward. If your organisation can support the UK’s Coronavirus response, get in touch with the DCI team today.
Infrastructure and Estates Pavilion
In the past we have written about the importance of engagement with buyers to ensure your organisation is doing research around the procurement process and where to find relevant contracts.
The world of procurement can be complex, so it is important to outline what your goals are as an organisation, and what the benefits are of engaging with buyers.
The DPRTE event champions early engagement and for the first time ever, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) hosted the Infrastructure and Estates Pavilion at the 2020 event.
This allowed both buyers and suppliers to connect with key DIO personnel and gain an insight into the new strategy, including the latest initiatives, developments and opportunities within defence infrastructure.
The latest Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) procurement pipeline, published on 5 October 2020, includes over 40 opportunities for construction suppliers.
The Procurement Pipeline replaces the Procurement Plan and complements the DIO Commercial Strategy.
Estimated contract values within the pipeline range from £200,000 to £113.6 million and there are opportunities for businesses of all sizes.
DIO has been undergoing a commercial transformation as it recognises that more needs to be done to enable suppliers of all sizes to benefit from the opportunity it offers. At the heart of this is making it easier for suppliers to work with DIO.
At the event DIO’s new Commercial Director, Nick Wilkinson, explained:
“What we have seen at this two-year point in the transformation is some significant forward momentum.
“We regularly talk to our supply chain to get feedback and it has been positive. It has helped us to focus on areas that we need to really keep working on, but it is also saying we are feeling things differently.”
Although DIO is near the beginning of its journey, making it easier for suppliers to work with DIO will result in an increase in the number of suppliers to defence – creating a wider and deeper economic impact both nationally and regionally.
The defence marketplace is thriving
Speaking at DPRTE Engage, the Defence Procurement Minister, Jeremy Quin, said that MOD spend with SMEs has risen to 19.3% by value in the past year.
Don’t miss out on opportunities that are relevant to your business.
Our Spend Analysis tool collates and publishes all UK defence sector and public sector spend data DCI customers can gain access to the latest spend figures from DIO and the MOD as the contracts are awarded – ahead of industry competitors.
Find defence contracts and access this kind of information now using DCI Spend Analysis and Archive Data.
Learn how by booking a live demo with a defence expert: