The Crown Commercial Service (“CCS”) has now published a revised standard Selection Questionnaire and guidance in the form of Procurement Policy Note (PPN) 8/16. This can be found here. PPN 8/16 supersedes and replaces PPN 3/15 which contained the previous CCS Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (“PQQ”) and statutory guidance.

The new PPN relates to above threshold procurements and applies to all contracting authorities in England, as well as contracting authorities in Wales and Northern Ireland that exercise wholly or mainly reserved functions.

PPN 8/16 indicates that the new standard Selection Questionnaire is compliant with the requirements of the European Single Procurement Document (“ESPD”).

The Selection Questionnaire is split into the following parts:

• Part 1: Potential supplier Information;
• Part 2: Exclusion Grounds; and
• Part 3: Selection Questions.

The first two parts align with the questions set out in the ESPD. As regards Part 3, the PPN indicates that since the supplier selection questions in the ESPD are not mandatory the CCS have made the policy decision to substitute these with those in the standard Selection Questionnaire.

Contracting authorities are required to use Part 1 and Part 2 of the Selection Questionnaire and cannot add or delete questions. The guidance states that the selection questions in Part 3 should be adopted across all procurement procedures and embedded as needed into procurement processes. Part 3 includes a section for contracting authorities to add project specific questions.

Deviations from the selection questions in Part 3 must be reported. Reportable deviations are:

• changes to the wording of the standard questions and instructions;
• additional questions that are included which are not specific to the
individual procurement.

The guidance indicates that, other than in circumstances where the evidence is required to ensure the proper conduct of the procedure, the evidence substantiating compliance with the Selection Questionnaire requirements should only be required from the winning bidder(s) once the winning bidder(s) have been identified.

The CCS standard PQQ contained in PPN 3/15 must no longer be used by contracting authorities. Therefore contracting authorities will need to update their procurement templates in order to incorporate the new Selection Questionnaire.