Ian Makgill

Santa being arrested

Buyers who stole Christmas (again)

It’s time to shed a festive tear and feel some sympathy for all the bidding teams who’ve got bids to respond to during the Christmas break. So put on a Christmas jumper and let’s have a run down of the buyers who insist on setting tender deadlines during the Christmas break. The list below includes buyers that have let tenders with …

Buyers who stole Christmas (again) Read More »

Procurement and impact

Governments spend over 13tn USD a year with their suppliers, or around 15% of global GDP. We’ve started analysing the carbon intensity of public procurement. It is uncertain how much of our carbon is emitted through public procurement, but with a strong emphasis on infrastructure, transport, and military spending it is likely to be more than 15% of the world’s greenhouse …

Procurement and impact Read More »

The Future Belongs To AI Powered Purchasing.

This week a respected Professor took to Twitter to criticise the government’s purchasing arrangements. It was immediately clear what had happened, a supplier with what must have been the best overall catalogue of goods and prices had earned a place on a framework providing electrical equipment for schools. Their products were subsequently promoted by Crown Commercial Service (CCS) as the best …

The Future Belongs To AI Powered Purchasing. Read More »

Grenfell heart

8 things you need to run a supplier blacklist

The news that UK government will implement a new supplier blacklist, banning errant companies from winning contracts has raised the question of how to operate a bidding blacklist in public contracting. Below we outline the 8 essentials things that a government needs to have in place to make a blacklist work. A process that everyone can sign up to For any …

8 things you need to run a supplier blacklist Read More »

A woman works at a desk surrounded by post it notes and a laptop. A black and white photo features red, hand drawn highlights.

Our story. Reinventing a business.

Spend Network exists because I almost lost everything. Where we came from: I’d built a consultancy with twenty staff and clients across the financial and government sectors. It was a good little firm. We knew our stuff and it was good to see Government and Banks collaborating. The crash Then the financial crisis hit. Our clients withdrew from contracts and projects …

Our story. Reinventing a business. Read More »


Procuring Inequality: Our Report.

Spend Network is pleased to release our survey on the gender pay gap data in public procurement. We linked gender pay gap reports from over 2,600 organisations across nearly 31,000 contracts won by these organisations during the 2017-2020 period. This gave us insight into what organisations public money is going to, what gender pay bias exists in those organisations, and the …

Procuring Inequality: Our Report. Read More »

A session of the 10th East Asia Summit (EAS)

Procurement Transparency Suffers Under Covid-19

Government publishing of procurement notices has fallen significantly following the global spread of Covid-19. The total number of tender notices published globally has fallen by nearly 40%, with the numbers in Asia falling by 68%. In many cases, the pandemic has forced buyers to focus on emergency procurements, particularly of personal protective equipment for medical staff. These contracts and many others …

Procurement Transparency Suffers Under Covid-19 Read More »

Tenders published by year in Africa

South Africa, Kenya lead the way on African transparency.

Both South Africa and Kenya lead the way in procurement transparency according to our data, South Africa and Kenya publish more tender notices than the rest of the continent combined and Kenya is the only country with that systematically publishes contract award notices. Both countries have implemented transparency initiatives and both are committed to using transparency to tackle corruption. Although Nigeria …

South Africa, Kenya lead the way on African transparency. Read More »

Where Next For Data Led Procurement in Europe? A Discussion.

The They Buy For You  Project (TBFY) concluded on 31 December 2020. To mark the occasion, we look back at three years of hard work, take stock and discuss the future of procurement analytics to unlock data value chains. Our conversation is with Till Christopher Lech (SINTEF Digital), Elena Simperl (King’s College, London), Oscar Corcho (Universidad Politecnica de Madrid) and Ian …

Where Next For Data Led Procurement in Europe? A Discussion. Read More »

Lollipop chart showing time taken to publish contract award notices

How Long Does It Take A Department To Publish A Contract Notice?

Public sector organisations have, according to guidance, thirty days to publish details of their contracts online. So, thirty days after a contract there should be a public notice with some key details about the contract online. Our analysis shows that on average, just three departments met the thirty day guideline in 2020. In 2019, just two departments met the guideline. In …

How Long Does It Take A Department To Publish A Contract Notice? Read More »

Example dashboard for a client

Visualise your data

Harness the power of procurement data to make informed decisions. Using our advanced analytics, we can create custom visualisations and dashboards for your team. Whether you’re building new insights for your own campaign or wanting to understand the nuts and bolts of your own procurement data, we can help you bring your data to life; from identifying the key metrics you …

Visualise your data Read More »


Clean and enrich your data

Cleanse all of the supplier records within your organisation, creating a single, consolidated record with rich information to help you make better buying decisions. Match your suppliers to a single, company record; show other buyers who trade with your suppliers and; enrich your data with addresses, identifiers, company structures and more.

The Large Library, University College, Dublin

Classify your data

We have built a state-of-the-art algorithm just to categorise procurement data. Work with us to categorise millions of records with stunning accuracy automatically. Classify any document type, including spending and contract data; Classify multiple languages in a single process; Real time classification for new data from multiple sources and; use common standards like CPV or build custom classifications.

Spend Network's Insight Product

Analysis for the $13trn global market

If you need authoritative, evidence-based insight to apply to a broader strategic challenge, we’re here to help. Unlike other consultants, we start with the largest database of procurement data in the world and combine that with deep analytical insights and expert knowledge of public contracting, not just in the UK but globally. Analyse competitive dynamics or contracting trends in a particular …

Analysis for the $13trn global market Read More »

Soldiers loading PPE into the back of an aeroplane

High priorities in PPE lead to missed opportunities

The NAO has just published a report criticising the government for using a ‘high priority lane’ where suppliers that were known to MPs were prioritised for public contracts for protective equipment, often at high values. Thread follows. https://www.nao.org.uk/report/government-procurement-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/ It isn’t hard to see why this is a problem, good suppliers with a history of supplying PPE were overlooked in favour of …

High priorities in PPE lead to missed opportunities Read More »