Local Authorities in England have a combined revenue expenditure budget for 2018-19 of £95.9b. Add on the £8.1b in Wales and the £11.1b in Scotland and it is easy to see why local authorities are a substantial draw for companies supplying relevant products and services. Not only is the potential there but also payments are secure.
The difficulties come in actually realising that potential. How do you know where the requirements are, who makes the decisions and what is the purchasing process? In short, how do you sell to the local authority market?
Enterprise Ireland understands that, as with any sales process, it starts with really knowing and understanding your customer. You need to grasp the structure of the sector, how it has developed and speak the right language.
Hence it recognised the need to provide Irish companies with a roadmap to the sector in the UK in order to stimulate growth.
It’s not enough to think that you can sign up to some tender alert service and simply bid for the work. 99 times out of a 100 that will not work and you will have spent hours of time and effort for nothing. In most cases, by the tender stage, the decision-maker has at least a short-list of companies who have been involved from Day 1 in helping define the need, the specification, the pre-requisites, service levels etc.
Go Exporting submitted our proposal to produce a report designed to give the knowledge needed in order to understand the local authority customer and the purchasing process.
We were delighted to be selected as the partner consultant for this exciting project. The final report was delivered on time by end March 2019 and we are currently working on Stage 2 of the project to provide details of specific areas of local authority priorities and investment.