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Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household ...

Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household ...

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notifications of changes to the RFT. The issuing of addenda and amendment notifications to tenderers via AusTender helped to ensure equitable treatment of tenderers and supported compliance with the requirements of the CPGs. Lessons learned from the RFT process 3.18 DBCDE undertook an evaluation of the RFT process for the Mildura/Sunraysia pilot. The internal review highlighted that, although the Mildura/Sunraysia RFT established the approach for subsequent rollouts, procurement planning could be improved. The report found that the HAS program development and implementation section would have benefited from more structured and coordinated interaction with those areas of DBCDE responsible for providing legal and procurement advice. Although the advice provided by these areas was generally of a high quality, it was often of an ad hoc and informal nature, with questions generally answered via email. 3.19 The review also found that the HAS program development and implementation section would face continuing pressure to rapidly incorporate the lessons learned from previous procurements into subsequent RFTs and draft deeds. The process of developing and updating the RFT and the draft deed was complex, due in part to the technical nature of the equipment and services involved in the delivery of the Scheme, but also as a result of the interaction between service contractors, DHS and the department. 3.20 A key recommendation of the review related to the disclosure of weightings for each of the RFT criteria for future rollouts from Regional South Australia and Broken Hill. The department is yet to implement this recommendation. Tender Evaluation and Probity Plan 3.21 DBCDE prepared a Tender Evaluation and Probity Plan for each procurement activity. The purpose of each plan was to set out the processes for evaluating the tenders received in response to the RFT. The plans included background information for HAS, such as details on eligibility and the services to be provided by tenderers, and assessment processes, such as probity arrangements and the evaluation overview. 3.22 The five evaluation criteria—service delivery solution, capability, capacity, compliance, technical feasibility and cost—were informed by a range of relevant technical and service delivery requirements, and appropriately reflected the scope and objectives of the tender. DBCDE has consistently ANAO Audit Report No.55 2011–12 Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household Assistance Scheme 70

Tender Selection and Deed Negotiation applied the evaluation criteria contained in the evaluation and probity plans with that provided in each RFT. 3.23 While all Tender Evaluation and Probity Plans from the Mildura/Sunraysia pilot to the Regional Queensland rollout specified the membership of the evaluation committee, advisers were not identified. For each procurement activity, evaluation committee members had individually endorsed the plan, acknowledging that they would follow the plan in their assessment of tenders. The delegate also endorsed the Tender Evaluation and Probity Plan for each rollout. Industry briefing 3.24 DBCDE initially conducted industry briefings in Mildura in June 2009. The briefings were designed to provide general information and respond to questions from potential tenderers. All questions and answers were collated and published on AusTender. Further industry briefings were not undertaken until the Regional Southern and Regional Northern New South Wales RFT process in 2011. The conduct of briefings in subsequent switchover regions would have given the department an indication of the level of interest in the Scheme and provided potential tenderers with further information on which to base their decision to tender. Conclusion 3.25 The HAS procurement outcome aligned with the overall objective of the Scheme set by government and the procurement process involved separate approaches to market for each switchover region. This staged approach was a key design element as the industry had limited experience in the delivery of government funded services. 3.26 DBCDE did not develop a procurement plan for HAS, with the department considering that a single national tender response to demonstrate readiness was not possible in advance of each switchover. The staged delivery of the Scheme does not preclude the development of a procurement plan, as this could have taken into account the specific requirements of each rollout area and been reviewed and updated following the rollout. A procurement plan would have outlined key elements of the procurement activities and provided assurance that the procurements were conducted in accordance with probity principles and consistent with relevant legislative obligations and Australian Government policies. ANAO Audit Report No.55 2011–12 Administration of the Digital Television Switchover Household Assistance Scheme 71

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