I read the papers with interest this morning - the decision to award FirstGroup the franchise for the west coast train service has been scrapped by the government and compensation of some £40m has been awarded to unsuccessful bidders from the tendering process.
The BBC reported that "The transport secretary said there were "significant technical flaws" in the bidding process because of mistakes by Department for Transport staff.
Three civil servants have been suspended. The estimated cost of reimbursing four companies for the cost of their bids will be £40m, Patrick McLoughlin said"
So the tendering process is flawed...
This story mirrors an interesting similarity to a local situation involving pharmacy...namely the INR tendering process. The LPC has been inundated with complaints from contractors, small and large, complaining about the process of application to provide an INR service under the
Any Qualified Provider (AQP) model. The details of why pharmacies have been unsuccessful (or the problems encountered with the process) are being taken up by the LPC, and it would be improper to discuss them here, but the similarities with the west coast train fiasco are startling!