Step 2: Reviewing bids

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Publish details of the public procurement, including the social conditions in global supply chains. Once the award has been made, reach agreement on this issue.

The review process

Bidders must agree to the social conditions when signing the contract. You can include these statements of agreement in the contract "implicitly" or "explicitly". In the case of an "implicit" statement of agreement, you should include a passage to the effect that, by participating in the tendering process, suppliers agree to be bound by international social conditions. In the case of an "explicit" statement of agreement, the supplier is asked to tick off a check-list or a compliance list. Details of how bidders plan to comply with these international social conditions must not play any part in the selection process.

Reach agreement with the supplier

Once the award has been made, reach agreement with the supplier on how they plan to comply with these social conditions. The supplier is not required to demonstrate absolute lack compliance in the entire global supply chain but must rather do everything that is reasonably possible to prevent or resolve any violations.

Determine the approach to be taken

When entering into a contract, suppliers must agree to implement the social conditions and indicate exactly how they plan to combat social injustices. The obligation to mitigate these risks "to the best of their ability" applies: suppliers must carry out checks and, if necessary, take measures to minimise or eliminate risks in the supply chain. In their annual report, suppliers must publicly justify the actions that they have taken to minimise the identified risks. If additional social conditions apply or if specific risks are involved, then suppliers must prepare an action plan at the start of the contract period.

EXAMPLE | City of Eindhoven focuses on international social conditions

In a public procurement for telephone services and mobile phones, the City of Eindhoven accepted the international social conditions that apply to the entire telephony chain. The City incorporated information about risks, such as child labour and other injustices, in the information notice. Once the award had been made, the City engaged the supplier in a dialogue about how they could affect the entire telephony chain. More particularly, they addressed the issue of how suppliers can take a step in the right direction. 


Proceed to Step 3: Monitoring the contract