About the flexible framework
The Sustainable Procurement National Action Plan, Procuring the Future, provides a practical framework for the UK Government to achieve its goal of being amongst the European Union (EU) leaders in sustainable procurement by 2009.
The Action Plan focuses on the social, economic and environmental dimensions of public procurement. The plan makes six key recommendations:
- Lead by example - clear commitment from the top of government through to permanent secretaries, local authority members and chief executives in all public bodies
- Set clear priorities - a single integrated sustainable procurement framework
- Raise the bar - existing minimum standards for central government should be properly enforced and extended to the rest of the public sector. Further standards should be developed in the priority areas of; construction, energy, food, furniture, health and social work, office machinery, pulp and paper, textiles, transport and waste
- Build capacity - a flexible framework has been developed to enable public sector organisations to benchmark their own capability.
- Remove barriers - including budgetary constraints, the failure to implement whole life costing, the split between management of operation and capital budgets, and uncertainty on how to take account of non-monetary benefits. HM Treasury to simplify and clarify existing guidance on whole life costing
- Capture opportunities - better engagement with suppliers to encourage innovative solutions
The flexible framework has been developed to assess the quality of procurement activity and provide a clear route to better performance. It covers five themes:
- Policy, strategy & communication
- Procurement process
- Engaging suppliers
- Measurement & results
The Green Procurement Code focuses on green purchasing, one aspect of sustainable procurement which is specific to the environmental impact assessment of the products you buy.
Why is it relevant?
The Green Procurement Code progress review aligns with these five themes of the flexible framework. Completing the progress review will help you on your way to achieving the principles set out in the flexible framework.
In addition, the Green Procurement Code also measures the results of these procedures and the performance of individual organisations, an aspect of green procurement which has not previously been available. Performance is recognised through the bronze, silver and gold levels of the Green Procurement Code.
Click here to view the flexible framework.