KCS Procurement Services has been established for over 90 years and is owned by Kent County Council. They set up compliant tenders and framework agreements, which bring together suppliers and their public sector members, who are largely from the education sector.
We have developed a detailed guide for those businesses looking to win tenders with schools, academies and multi-academy trusts (MATs), which can be found here.
We find many clients, particularly sales-focused SMEs, can do very well with KCS frameworks. KCS frameworks largely allow direct awards, meaning schools and colleges, for example, can work directly and quickly with approved suppliers who have been accepted onto a framework.
As an outsourced team of bid writers, we regularly produce winning tenders for our clients via KCS frameworks, which really can change their businesses and provide high levels of sustainable growth. We are specialists in bid writing for SMEs, helping them compete against larger competitors with in-house bid teams.
KCS Tenders and Frameworks – can you compete?
A full list of existing approved KCS suppliers can be found here. You will notice a mix of well-known brands and SME businesses.
Our SME client The DMS Digital Group, for example, is a great example of being able to compete with larger corporate businesses. They were successfully awarded a KCS framework to provide:
- Audio Visual Solutions
- IT Hardware
- Management Services for Business Solutions
- Multi-Functional Devices and Digital Solutions
View what we have achieved working alongside The DMS Digital Group here.
It is important to understand your competition, including its weaknesses. A smaller business has a lot to offer and really can compete.
How do KCS frameworks work?
KCS sets up frameworks or DPS (Dynamic Purchasing System) agreements for their education sector and broader public sector members to use. These frameworks allow their schools and academies, for example, to work with successfully awarded suppliers quickly and compliantly. Click here for a comprehensive overview of what a DPS and Framework is and why they could be very important for your business.
KCS uses Kent Business Portal, which is a Proactis solution; easy to use and common with most Councils. You can register as a supplier today and view their live opportunities to tender, as well as the KCS Contracts Register.
For more tender opportunities take a look at our comprehensive and free tender alert software, covering UK and Europe, Tender Pipeline.
Once you are approved on a KCS framework or DPS, you are part of a smaller marketplace of suppliers and it provides a significant opportunity for tailored sales and marketing, as well as more formal mini competitions, where you will be formally invited to bid for specific contracts via their portal.
KCS Frameworks Overview
KCS creates a vast number of opportunities for suppliers, contractors and
consultants right across the UK. You can monitor these via our free software Tender Pipeline.
Below we have provided some examples, each of which is available to tender for, giving you the chance to bid and become approved with KCS:
· Audio Visual Solutions Framework
· Barrister Services Framework
· Books, Downloads & Associated Services Framework
· Catering Services (Educational) Framework
· CCTV and Access Solutions Framework
· Cleaning Services Framework
· Communications Solutions and Associated Telephony Services Framework
· Courier Services & Specialist Logistics Framework
· Education Management Systems Framework
· Electric Vehicle Charging Points Framework
· Electric Vehicle Charging Points and Associated Services Framework
· Employee Support Services and Benefits Framework
· Frozen, Chilled & Ambient Food Supply Framework
· Grounds Maintenance Framework
· Integrated Community Care Equipment Framework
· IT Hardware Framework
· Legal Services Framework
· Managed ICT Services Framework
· Managed Services for Business Solutions Framework
· Multi-Functional Devices and Digital Solutions Framework
· Office Supplies Framework
· Software Products and Associated Services Framework
· Temporary and Semi-permanent Buildings Framework
· Total Facilities Management Framework
· Travel Management Framework
· Uniform, Clothing and Associated Services Framework
· Vehicle Daily Rental Framework
· Washroom Services Framework
· Waste Management Services Framework
Bid Writing Support to Win KCS Tenders and Frameworks
If you supply the public sector now and are not on any KCS frameworks, we are confident you are missing out on tender opportunities.
If you are looking to work with the public sector as a new route of growth, which can be especially important when entering into difficult financial times, KCS frameworks provide an accessible route.
While KCS frameworks do not guarantee any level of spend to suppliers, we know they are extremely successful for our existing clients. As a result, they can be highly competitive.
While we do not support our clients with their pricing for KCS bids, we do help them prepare for the opportunities with regard to creating the very best quality response they can possibly put forward. This involves:
- Considering what you will be asked to provide
- Seeing how you can add value
- Understanding buyer needs and how they align with your strengths
- Creating tailored evidence to provide reassurance that as a supplier you not only do not represent any risk to their members but can offer innovation, compliance and value for money.
At Thornton & Lowe we can:
- Highlight relevant KCS upcoming tenders and framework opportunities
- Develop bid libraries of content which will save you time when the tender is live
- Provide bid writing help and capacity
- Bid design services, including designing your supporting documents such as policies and case studies
- Training your in-house sales teams to bid better.
Our top tips for bid writing can be found here. Considering your Social Value offer is also very important when it comes to writing successful bids for KCS frameworks. We have developed a guide to Social Value in Tendering which provides examples and guidance for when you are bidding for your next contract.
Bid Writing Success and Feedback:
“The processes that The DMS Digital Group and Thornton & Lowe put into place were robust and we continue to use them to this day. Since the implementation of this, our success rate has increased significantly and our team now has a number of successful bids completed with a total value of £1-2 million.” Terence Hargreaves, The DMS Digital Group Director