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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

What is a framework agreement? 

Framework agreements are agreements between the Scottish Government and suppliers of a range of goods and services that are designed to offer value for money and a variety of other benefits to public and voluntary sector organisations. 

The Scottish Government’s Procurement and Property Directorate leads on and delivers framework agreements, working to ensure that organisations, including from the voluntary sector, can access commonly purchased goods and services in ways which deliver economic benefits and significant financial savings. This could include things like being able to bulk buy, or access special customer support, depending on the goods or services you need.

The wide range of framework agreements on offer covers a variety of goods and services, from stationery and electricity to market research and media services. All of these can be found on the Scottish Government’s procurement contract directory

How could using a framework agreement benefit my organisation? 

Each available framework agreement comes with its own benefits. However, some common benefits include: 

  • Competitive market rates & value for money savings
  • Potential ability to bulk buy good or supplies
  • Comprehensive range of products & services available 
  • Access to a wide range of suppliers & services
  • Electronic processes, streamlined procurement & self-service portals 
  • Pre-agreed terms & conditions
  • Sharing of knowledge & best-practice
  • Suppliers who meet the Scottish Government’s Fair Work Matters criteria
  • A range of additional sustainability, community, and socio-economic benefits.  

If your organisation is seeking goods or services, there could be a framework agreement available that could offer you real financial savings as well as other benefits like those listed above. 

Who is eligible to use framework agreements? 

The majority of the framework agreements available on the Scottish Government’s procurement contract directory can be used by voluntary sector organisations. More eligibility information is provided for each on the corresponding webpage and within each buyer’s guide. However, the assumption should be that each is open to voluntary organisations unless otherwise stated.  

Please note that the Scottish Government views eligible voluntary organisations as charities who are entered on the Scottish Charity Register and/or voluntary organisations entered on the membership database of SCVO. You can find out more about becoming an SCVO member

Scottish Government suspends new energy customers

Due to the increase in energy costs, the Scottish Government has temporarily suspended taking on new customers for its Electricity and Natural Gas framework agreements. Unfortunately, this means that organisations who are not already on these framework agreements are not currently able to apply. This decision will be kept under review.

How do I use a framework agreement? 

To access the framework agreements offered by the Scottish Government, first visit the procurement contracts directory on the Scottish Government website. Here you will find links to further information on each of the available framework agreements. 

Each of these lays out more information on a particular framework agreement, including access to the corresponding buyer’s guide and detail on how to use the framework agreement you’re interested in. 

For example, if you’re looking to source stationery for your organisation and you’ve already accessed the procurement contracts directory, simply browse the list until you find Stationery and office paper, click the link, and then scroll down to the Using this contract section. 

Tell us about your experiences of using frameworks

If you require further support with any of the framework agreements listed within the Scottish Government’s procurement contract directory, contact details are available on each corresponding webpage.  

However, if you have any feedback – be it positive or negative – regarding your experience of using any of the framework agreements, please don’t hesitate to let us know. We’re keen to hear from voluntary organisations who have engaged with the process, both to inform our own understanding of the framework agreements on offer, and to feedback to the Scottish Government directly so that we can help identify issues and shape improvements.  

If you want to provide us with your views, ask any questions on the information above, or discuss framework agreements in more detail, please contact Jason Henderson, Policy and Public Affairs Officer, at:  

Last modified on 22 September 2022
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