Written by: Brett Lyndon – The Pro Forum Community of Practice
Successful social procurement is built on:
- Context & catalysts: how social procurement is relevant to the procurement and the reason for inclusion and consideration;
- Culture & champions: it is supported organisationally and is driven and built by internal champions;
- Clarity & Communication: it is built out of dialogue between all relevant stakeholders sharing clear and sustainable models.
Social Procurement can look different depending on the context and the catalysts. Here are a few examples:
Aligning an opportunity with Procurement Policy Principles
Case Study: – RoadTek Queensland. 
RoadTek had regular staff vacancies in their maintenance yards and determined that there was a recognition of values that included:
- Combining their search for quality staff and adding social value in their community
- Allocating a parcel of work to a social enterprise
- Delivering on QPP principles while working within organisational procurement procedures.
Consultation around the development of the initiative included modifying the tender process to include social benefit as a guiding principle.
Ability Enterprises, a local organisation that delivers job opportunities for people with barriers to employment, including people with disability, refugees and Indigenous Queenslanders was engaged.
Outcomes: By embracing social procurement, RoadTek has met their staffing requirements and established a procurement process that is changing lives in their local community
Corporate Social Procurement working to provide an alternative solution.
Case Study: – Housing All Australians.
Housing All Australians is a group of private sector individuals and corporates with a shared vision that it is in Australia’s long term economic interest to house all Australians, including those on low incomes. Their role is to increase the availability of and access to affordable housing outside of the public and social housing sector.
This includes pop up shelters, build to rent initiatives and working with Super funds to undertake commercial development on government land under long term lease agreements.
The Pro Forum spoke with Founder & Director Robert Pradolin in May of this year around the challenges of homelessness and social procurement by the private sector in supporting local initiatives of converting unused space into affordable permanent housing.
Read more about Housing All Australians here https://housingallaustralians.org.au/about-us/
Meeting the expectations of the public
Case Study: – The Department of Veteran’s Affairs, The Office of Australian War Graves [OWAG]
OWAG takes care of war cemeteries and war graves. They work in Australia, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. They also build and look after official Australian memorials overseas. In recent times they engaged with a local TAFE and their indigenous horticultural students to maintain a specific site. This built a stronger connection and understanding in the community and provided students with an enviable history experience.
Read more about OWAG https://www.dva.gov.au/wargraves
It is becoming more common for organisations and agencies to move from a grant or donation support model to purchasing of services creating a more viable and sustainable outcome for all.