Drafting that final confidential report to Council can be onerous. There are lots of things to include, lots of things to consider and lots of time involved in drafting it. It’s timely to reflect on what you can do to make the task more efficient and what are the basics you need to cover.
Firstly, one opportunity often missed is drafting the report as the evaluation proceeds rather than after evaluations are complete. To get in the habit, add the names and details of tenderers promptly into the report template. It’s a simple start and helps you to get into the habit of thinking ahead. Next, when the evaluation panel is meeting and preparing its records and minutes, cut and paste applicable information straight to the report template. You won’t need all detail, but often summary worksheets, scores and panel comments are appropriate to transfer. Your recommendation report will now be taking some shape but there’s still more to do.
Some or all of the report may be released into the public arena. So, think about what can or should be disclosed to the public verses what should remain confidential. Full public disclosure is encouraged where possible, but genuinely confidential information is best covered via a confidential attachment. Information genuinely confidential could be judged so if its disclosure might prejudice the commercial position of a party or confer a commercial advantage on a competitor of the council or reveal a trade secret.
According to the Tendering Guidelines for NSW Councils (2009) the report should include all information necessary to allow council to make an informed decision. It should include:
• Background information (e.g., details of the tender process, the previous contract and contractor performance).
• Sequence of tender process events.
• Details and authorisation of any change to the conditions of tender or advertising period.
• Evaluation criteria and weightings.
• Full details of all tenders received (including detailed information about non-complying or alternate tenders and decisions).
• Financial analysis of the tenders providing a comparison of all options.
• Details of the evaluation and the analysis of tenders against the criteria, including a summary of the experience of tenderers.
• Details of any post-tender communications such as clarifications.
• Summary of the most suitable tender including the rationale or the rationale for considering none of the tenders suitable.
• A recommendation for the acceptance of a tender including, if applicable, any conditions associated with the acceptance, or proposals to vary the contract conditions as a result of
the tendering process, or errors in documentation, or a recommendation not to accept any of the tenders.
Information in the report should remain confidential pending council’s determination, taking into account any potential recission period.
Where it is necessary for a late matter to be submitted to council, the report should include the reasons for the late submission.