Commonwealth procurement complaints processes

John Sheridan - CIO & CISO

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Hi all,

In the context of my role as Australian Government Procurement Coordinator, I am responsible for handling complaints from potential suppliers following the awarding of a contract.

To give you some context on the number of complaints received, in the four years from 2010-11 to 2013-14 inclusive, there were over 295,488 procurement contracts awarded by the Commonwealth, yet over a similar four year period, there were only 14 complaints.

I recognise that our low number of complaints could be due to a number of reasons, including:

  • procurement officials are doing a great job;
  • suppliers are unaware of the current complaints process set out on the Finance website here; or
  • suppliers are unwilling to use the complaints process for fear that it may adversely affect their future experiences working with government.

I suspect it might be some combination of all of the above.

With this in mind, I would welcome your views on whether there is any appetite for suppliers to have additional avenues to raise complaints. For example, would a facility to allow suppliers to raise queries with tender processes in train in an anonymised format be useful? Let me know your thoughts in the comments, or email by Friday 21 August.


Last updated: 24 January 2018