Our procurement activities promote improved procurement practices to enable better project outcomes. We focus on de-risking the professional indemnity insurance market (including through appropriate risk allocation and civil liability reform), more collaborative contracting and improved tender arrangements.
The availability and affordability of professional indemnity insurance is a business-critical issue for our members. We are particularly active on bringing the current state of market to the attention of government clients and policy makers - sharing our ideas on de-risking the market. Key submissions and materials on this issue are provided below.
Our Uplifting Productivity report demonstrates how to deliver economic growth through best practice procurement. Reform does not need to be an invention test - the report's recommendations rely on past projects where collaboration and communication were prioritised.
A campaign for governments to adopt a model client policy, to promote greater standardisation of contracts, and to improve tendering arrangements. Read our Model Client Policy.
Industry stakeholders agree that better procurement practice will unlock innovation. By focussing on best practice, we can achieve better outcomes
Read our Innovation in Infrastructure report.
A campaign to tackle unfair contract terms and increase collaborative contracting. We advocate for improvements to the Australian Consumer Law Unfair Contract Terms Protections including application to government contracts.
Read our Submission - Unfair Contract Term Protections (March 2020)
Consult Australia along with 13 other industry bodies signed a joint letter calling on the Commonwealth government to act now on procurement reform to ensure the sustainability of the construction ecosystem.
Consult Australia has also made a submission that takes a deeper dive on solutions to problematic procurement practices.
2 August 2021
Consult Australia has contributed to the Insurance Council of Australia’s consultation on the role of the private insurance market, calling on the ICA to work with us to advocate for government action to de-risk the market.
Submission to Productivity Commission
We submitted to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into SA's regulatory framework, advocating for the use of standardised contracts, reasonable insurance requirements and better procurement practices. You can read our submission here. Despite the terms of reference for the Inquiry being broad and was said to cover 'any government policy', the Productivity Commission recently responded that procurement matters were out of scope. We will continue to advocate on these issues in Australia as they extend beyond procurement and are business critical issues.
Insurance and contract terms key barriers to supplying to government
The NSW government wants to make it easier for small and medium businesses to sell to NSW government, with the Small Business Commissioner calling for submissions on the key barriers. Consult Australia’s submission stressed how insurance obligations and contract terms were the key barriers for our small business members. We talked proportionate liability, fitness for purpose, liability caps and warranties as examples of onerous contract terms. Contact Kristy to discuss the onerous contracts you’ve seen (whether from private or public clients).
See our submission to the Federal Treasury's consultation on the 2021-22 Budget. Our procurement recommendations include:
See our submission for the Federal Treasury's
consultation on the 2020-21 Budget. We emphasis the importance of
infrastructure and built environment for Australia's COVID-19 economic
recovery. Our procurement recommendations include continued funding for the National Centre of Procurement Excellence, and the adoption of our Model Client Policy.
See our submission on the WA Debarment Regime proposed by WA Treasury, as part of its broader procurement reform agenda. The regime would give the government the power to debar suppliers for between two and five years. This is a novel approach for Australia – no other state or territory has introduced such a scheme. We raised concerns about suspension during an investigation and a lack of clarity on review rights. We also raised how potentially the application of the regime to ‘affiliates’ (defined broadly within the proposed regime) might capture the commercial arrangements consultants are part of on major infrastructure projects (such as join ventures and alliances).
See our submission on the Payment Times Reporting Framework released by the Commonwealth Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources. We supported the move to ensure small businesses are paid on time - but noted that government clients are among the worst at paying on time. We raised concerns with the proposed enforcement regime and suggested that the framework capture internal policies or use of third parties/apps that could impact on payment times.
See our submission to the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman’s Supply Chain Financing Review where we raised concerns about extended payments time and the influence of market power. Our small business members have limited experience with supply chain financing/reverse factoring but face significant issues on extended payment times
Our procurement policy and advocacy campaigns are member-driven by our state/territory committees, our Liability & Contracts Roundtable and our Defence Roundtable.
From time to time we need input from the broader Consult Australia membership to drive our initiatives and engagement - see Latest News.
For more information about our procurement work, please contact Consult Australia at email@example.com.