JNCC works with external independent experts through its Business Associates Framework (BAF), launched in August 2020. The Framework enables us, as an organisation, to attract and work with market-leading specialists, to assist us in providing specialist expertise to our customers. The aim of the Framework is to maximise our potential, ensure excellence in technical innovation, and to give us access to the brightest minds.
Our Business Associates Framework provides us with a wide network of trusted individuals who can take on specific tasks and activities, such as leading on technical drafting or facilitating delivery of specific project roles, thus broadening our skills and staff base without incurring additional salary costs. Our Business Associates also enable us to more efficiently manage delivery risks and to alleviate pressure points on existing staff resources, and ensure greater flexibility. All our Associates must work to the same high standards that JNCC operates to.
Our current BAF is due to expire in August 2021 and we will be re-procuring a new BAF in July, which will commence in September 2021. The opportunity will be posted on Contracts Finder and the Find a Tender Service (FTS), both of which are free for suppliers to use. FTS replaces the role of Tenders Electronic Daily, the Official Journal of the EU (OJEU/TED) for procurements in the UK. The open competitive tender exercise will focus on our future strategic need, the credibility of the organisations responding, and our values and ethics.
By definition, a "Business Associate" is any independent (often self-employed) person not directly employed by JNCC. There are few constraints on who can be a Business Associate of JNCC, however, our selection criteria will be clearly set-out on the tender documentation. The new Framework Agreement will be for a period of four years.
Through our Associates, we aim to improve our ability to provide better project delivery and undertake more specialist or niche activities. Our Business Associates will also constitute a community, thereby affording opportunities for a wider network of interactions and development opportunities.