Compliance with regulations
As a utility operating in England, UK Power Networks must comply with the Utilities Contract Regulations 2006 (as amended) which implement Directive 2004/17/EC. The Regulations are intended to facilitate greater competition by opening up markets and require UK Power Networks to competitively tender works, goods and services above certain thresholds. The key aspect of the Utilities Contract Regulations 2006 (as amended) is that any purchase made by UK Power Networks with an aggregate value which exceeds a declared threshold must be subject to a competitive tendering process.
UK Power Networks Services is exempt from the Utilities Contract Regulations but is still required to comply with competition law and best practice outlined in the UK Power Networks’ Policies and Procedures.
Pre-qualifications for vendors
Pre-qualification ensures that vendors of goods, works and services meet UK Power Networks’ required levels of health, safety, environment, quality, CDM capability, ethical, commercial and financial stability standards.
All vendors working for UK Power Networks must be registered with “Achilles” as a minimum standard of pre-qualification. “Link Up” is accepted in place of Achilles for vendors working within the UK Power Networks’ Rail businesses.
Vendors undertaking “High Risk” activities on behalf of UK Power Networks must comply with the UK Power Networks’ Pre-qualification and Approval Procedure before they are put to work. If you undertake high risk activities you must also undergo the Achilles Verify audit.
All procurement activities represent a degree of risk to UK Power Networks. Risk is categorised into three categories – High, Medium or Low – as shown below.
N.B All vendors undertaking High Risk activity must complete UK Power Networks pre-qualification procedure and have a contract in place before any work commences.
Includes but is not limited to:
- Potentially dangerous activities e.g. working at height, on an electrical network, working in confined spaces
- Activities working ‘on or near the network’
- Working on UK Power Networks’ Assets
- Suppliers where a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) or Environmental risk is identified
- Where UK Power Networks accounts for 50% or more a contractor’s turnover
- Designers/project managers who are accessing the UK Power Networks electrical sites
- Suppliers who install equipment and general contractors
Any vendor that does not have a Health & Safety Risk within its scope of work but still presents a commercial risk to UK Power Networks.
Any vendor undertaking activities that pose little or no risk commercially and do not pose any Health & Safety Risk to UK Power Networks.