Midlands Businesses see 45 percent Growth in Public Sector Contracts

Public organisations based in the Midlands have published 45 per cent more contracts in the last five years, according to new data from Millstream.

The procurement specialist’s new research shows that Midlands-based public sector organisations made 2,368 more contracts available to potential suppliers in the year to June compared to the same period five years ago.

Key growth sectors were healthcare (82 per cent growth in last five years), construction (62 per cent) and computing (37 per cent). 

Tim Williams, Managing Director at Millstream, said: “There are a wealth of new contracts available in the Midlands and further afield for private sector suppliers that will help to fuel regional economic growth. 

“However, the region will only see the benefits of that increased procurement spend if those opportunities are won by firms with a keen eye on the procurement process and a capacity to also compete nationally.”

Spending on public procurement has seen modest growth in the last few years as the sector seeks out efficiency savings from private firms. The UK government has also set a target of spending 25 per cent of its total procurement spend with SMEs.

Tim Williams added: “It may sound surprising that more public sector contracts are available in times of austerity, but this trend goes hand-in-hand with calls for improved cost and operational efficiencies within local authorities, the NHS and other public bodies. 

“Formal procurement is one way to make savings, as the process adopts a competitive bidding process. The private sector may also have more innovative ways to deliver a service or achieve a result, which could also save the public sector money.”

Mike Wilson, Partner at Strategic Healthcare Planning, a West Midlands based healthcare consultancy which recently won a public sector contract through Millstream, said: “Public sector contracts in the Midlands are plentiful. As a busy consultancy practice operating in the UK and internationally, we are keen to ensure that we receive the earliest possible notification of potential tendering opportunities.

“By making yourself aware of the procurement processes and contract cycles you’ll put your business on the front foot to win competitive tenders. Using Millstream’s Tenders Direct service, we get updates daily on contracts specific to our business as soon as they’re out. There are a lot of opportunities here in the Midlands for businesses to grow and as a result, help to support our economy.”