Shropshire Council

Commissioning social value - FAQs

Commissioners - where do we start?

Anybody involved in commissioning and procurement should ask themselves, at the beginning of each project, “How can I use this procurement to generate additional social, economic or environmental benefits for Shropshire?” This requires commissioners to understand the things that are important to our customers and communities, and how to reasonably and proportionately build those additional benefits into the procurement opportunity. This means that, when we're engaging, consulting and working with customers and stakeholders to design services, we should enlist their help in defining service outcomes, including social value outcomes.

We can, and should, define social value outcomes in procurement documentation and service specifications, and should apply a weighting for social value when evaluating tenders. We're not prescriptive about the weighting to be applied because it will depend on individual circumstances. However, as a guide weighting of 10% - 20% of overall marks is required, but where it’s appropriate we can apply a higher weighting.

Have a look at our overview for commissioners and contracts staff. Also have a look at this really useful guide to incorporating and managing Social Value in our contracts.

What can I do as a business, community or other organisation?

  • Read the Social Value Framework and take a look at our presentation to understand how your organisation can contribute
  • Speak to us / share – we’re still learning as well!
  • Be proactive – there are lots of other great resources on the internet
  • Be proactive – get involved in early market engagement where possible
  • If tendering for services:
    • Check the specification
    • Answer social value tender questions as comprehensively as possible but make it relevant
    • Think about how you'll demonstrate the social value you say will be delivered – evidence, reporting, relevance
    • Who else can help you to deliver great social value?

What form can social value take?

We've developed a Social Value Framework, which sets out a range of ways in which social value can be generated in Shropshire. The framework was developed through a social value group consisting of representatives from Shropshire Council, Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), West Mercia Police & Crime Commissioner’s Office, NHS Commissioning and Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly (VCSA).

The framework requires that social value generated through a commissioning and/or procurement exercise should contribute to one or more of the council’s priorities. This will ensure that the social value we generate is based on the things that people and communities have told us are important. The framework also requires that social value is integral to any commissioning and/or procurement exercise, and not simply seen as an ‘add-on’.

How is social value measured?

Take a look at our 'Measuring social value' page for more information.