The Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) Procurement process

The Defence Sourcing Portal (DSP) went live on the 15 February 2021. All new direct tender and contract opportunities valued over £10,000 wil be advertised on the DSP. Access and registration is free of charge and all suppliers looking for opportunities in Defence procurement are encouraged to register their details on the DSP.

All requirements advertised before the launch of the DSP are still available on the legacy Defence Contracts Online (DCO) portal. Access and registration to the DCO portal is also free of charge. All tendering activities started on the DCO will be completed on the DCO, with the portal being retired once all legacy work is concluded.

Common goods and services are bought via the Crown Commercial Service websiteCCS are the biggest public procurement organisation in the UK, they provide a wide range of common goods and services across the public sector.


This is a brief overview of a typical competition:

  1. requirement advertised
  2. pre-qualification questionnaire
  3. invited to tender
  4. independent assessment
  5. supplier selection
  6. contract award.

As a requirements driven organisation, first, we identify what we need to buy and we advertise this. Suppliers then have the opportunity to express their interest and bid. We use an initial questionnaire to pre-qualify suppliers. Suppliers are then invited to tender. We assess bids using pre-agreed criteria and select suppliers using objective evaluation. This criteria is used to select a supplier and award the contract. A debrief is available for suppliers if requested.

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