From time to time companies ask HSC Innovations how to sell into the Northern Ireland Health and Social Care bodies. Although HSC Innovations does occasionally buy relatively low value professional services, we do not generally buy healthcare products and services. The following links may assist companies:
- All procurement in HSC bodies is handled by the Procurement and Logistics Service of the HSC Business Services Organisation.
- The electronic tentering site for the Northern Ireland public sector, including HSC bodies, is eSourcing NI. This is where tenders are advertised.
Some workshops focus on healthcare or public sector general procurement. One current opportunity is provided by InterTradeIreland, the cross border business development body, in the form of the Go-2-Tender Workshops 2011 (July, September and October). These events aim to give SMEs the confidence, knowledge and practical skills to tender successfully for public sector contracts (not specifically HSC), particularly on a cross-border basis. Further information is on the website at www.intertradeireland.com/go2tender.
A colleague in the procurement service has offered the following general advice to potential suppliers:
- Make yourselves and your products/services known
- Target audience – user and buyer
- Direct communication
- Build positive relationships
- Register on eSourcing NI and check weekly
- Consider sub-contracting opportunities
- Opportunities evident from eSourcing NI
- Comply with tender requirements
- Seek feedback when unsuccessful
- Timing is important