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Defence Estate Quality Management System (DEQMS) BSI Certification

Probity - What is Probity

Why is Probity in the procurement process important?

Probity in the procurement process is important to ensure that the Government and the public can have utmost confidence in Government Purchasing, knowing that it is conducted in a manner that makes efficient, effective and ethical use of public money and resources. It also providers assurance around the decisions that are made during procurement activities.

What are Probity services?

The Defence Procurement Policy Manual identifies Probity Advice Services as the provision of independent advice and assistance during a procurement process to ensure that is conducted fairly and in accordance with Commonwealth requirements.

What areas of the procurement process are capable of causing Probity issues ?

There are many circumstances during a procurement process that may present a probity issue. Common examples include:

  • Actual or perceived conflicts of interest present in Commonwealth Officers engaged in the procurement process;
  • Actual or perceived bias;
  • Conduct of Commonwealth Officers when communicating with tenderers: eg. during telephone calls, emails, site visits, industry briefs, and particularly clarifications;
  • Offers of gifts or hospitality to Commonwealth Officers during a procurement process (see also Defence Instruction PERS 25-6);
  • Tenderer conformance with conditions of tender, particularly around mandatory minimum form and content requirements and late tenders;
  • Departures from the approved Tender Evaluation Plan;
  • Potential collusion or other anti-competitive practices evident in the tenders offered;
  • Confidentiality of tenderer information;
  • Security of tendered information;
  • Parallel negotiations with multiple tenderers; or
  • A decision to exclude from evaluation, set aside during evaluation, accept or decline a tender.