Commercial Services and Selling to the Council

Cornwall Council spent £517m during the 2014/15 financial year on a diverse range of goods, works and services from 6,335 external suppliers, purchasing everything from pencils to social care services to waste collection and disposal services.  The approach taken to this spending has a significant impact on the community and our own resources.

To help Suppliers tender for this work we have launched the Cornwall Supply Chain Development Programme (CSCDP) which aims to support businesses in becoming ‘tender ready’ and in reaching the standards required to engage in the public sector procurement process, consequently increasing their competitiveness.

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In addition there are a number of resources including a 'Selling to the Council Guide' and sample tender documents as well as details of upcoming events and procurement opportunities.

After eight very successful years the Tenders in Cornwall service ended on the 4th January 2016. Cornwall Council has taken the decision, in line with guidance from the Crown Commercial Service, to move onto an e-tendering and contract management system.

In addition to publishing opportunities on the new e-tendering and contract management system the Council will also be publishing all contract opportunities over £25k on Contracts Finder. Registration on Contracts Finder is simple and free.

The Council has recently launched an electronic Tendering and Contract Management System, which means the majority of procurement processes will now by run electronically.  This new system will host its own advertising portal which will sit on the Supplying the South West website.

Please register for free at: to receive notifications of Cornwall Council contract opportunities. However, if you are already registered on Supplying the Southwest then no further action is required. Please be aware that if you have previously been registered on Tenders in Cornwall you will not have automatically be migrated onto the new system.

For guidance on how to access the new system and register please read the documents below:

For information on the Council’s responsible procurement practices including our guidance for suppliers under the following strands:

  • Environmental sustainability and carbon management
  • Equality and diversity
  • Safeguarding
  • Ethical sourcing
  • SME engagement
  • Health and safety
  • Social Value: Employment and Skills
  • Social Value: Additional Outcomes for Vulnerable Groups
  • Social Value: Supporting, Protecting and Improving Community Assets

Please visit our responsible procurement page.

Cornwall Council is offering small and medium enterprise suppliers preferred payment terms. Please see the 'Preferred Payment Application Form' for more details. 

All invoices require a purchase order before payment. You should not accept orders (written or verbal) from Cornwall Council employees unless a Purchase Order is provided, which will contain a unique Purchase Order number. When creating your invoice, it is important that you quote the correct Purchase Order number, which should also be quoted on any receipt, or correspondence you have with us regarding that particular order. Regrettably if we do not receive the correct purchase order details, payment cannot be made and suppliers will be asked to re-submit the invoice with a valid Purchase Order number.

The Council uses 'Standard Terms and Conditions for Purchase Orders' for the majority of contracts with a value under £50,000; these are attached to purchase orders.

Cornwall Council is committed to working within the Cabinet Office Mystery Customer scheme.  

The scope and remit of the Mystery Shopper scheme, provides a route for suppliers to raise concerns about public procurement practice, and is completely independent of Cornwall Council.  The Cabinet Office Mystery Shopper team will then work with the Council to resolve concerns.

Before reporting an issue or concern to the Mystery Shopper Service please contact Commercial Services directly via so that we have an opportunity to resolve the issue.

Alternatively if you have any comments in relation to how we do business we would welcome feedback.