• Whole-of-government Common Use Arrangements

    When looking to purchase goods or services, one of the first things a government officer will ask is: 'Is there a Common Use Arrangement in place for this?'

    A Common Use Arrangement (CUA) is a whole-of-government standing offer, awarded to a single supplier or group of suppliers to provide goods or services commonly purchased by agencies. Think stationery, computers, fuel, telecommunications, waste or electricity.

    Each contracted supplier has agreed to supply these for a fixed period under specific terms and conditions – including price. Many CUAs allow government officers to ‘pick and buy’ the goods or services on offer, so there is no need for quotes.

    Most CUAs are mandatory in the Perth Metropolitan area. If an item is available on a CUA, an officer MUST buy it from one of the contracted suppliers, unless an exemption has been granted by Government  Procurement.

    Each CUA has a contract manager who is available for advice and works with suppliers to make sure they meet their contractual obligations.

    To find out which CUAs are relevant to your business, go to the Contracts WA website.

    Prepare to submit an offer

    Do your research to prepare for the time when you have to submit your offer for a CUA:

    • Check the Contracts WA website to see which CUA currently covers your product or service. Make a note of its expiry date.
    • Every CUA has a Buyers Guide, which will give you an insight into how the arrangement currently works. Buyers Guides are available on the Contracts WA website.
    • Make contact with the contract manager. You can find their contact details on the Contracts WA website and in the relevant Buyers Guide.

    There are a number of ways to find out if a CUA is up for renewal:

    1. Bookmark the home page of the Contracts WA website on your internet browser – it lists CUAs coming up for renewal.
    2. Register on the Tenders WA website to receive notices of tenders relevant to your business. Registration is free. If you have previously registered, make sure to keep your details up to date.
    3. Check the Early Tenders Advice listing on the Tenders WA website (picture right).
    4. Once advertised, CUA tenders are listed on the Tenders WA website.

    To be considered as a CUA supplier, you have to go through a tendering process. Go to the Overview of the tendering process web page for more information.

    If you need help with the Tenders WA website or Contracts WA website, contact the Procurement Systems team by email on procsystems@finance.wa.gov.au or by phone on 6551 2020.

    GP regularly runs quoting and tendering training sessions for suppliers. If you are new to tendering or need a refresher, attend a free New to Quotes and Tenders seminar.

    Marketing for CUA suppliers

    Once you are on a CUA, you are in a great position to supply goods and services to Government as your business is listed in the Buyers Guide.

    Don’t forget, since most CUAs have more than one supplier, you are still operating in a competitive field. To make the most of your position as a contracted supplier, make sure to continuously market your business to relevant agencies.

    These lists will help you identify potential buyers:

    The Approved CUA users list (PDF) includes all organisations that have approval to buy from CUAs.

    The Government purchasing officers list (PDF) includes the contacts details of a purchasing officer in each State Government agency.

    Tip: To find out when CUAs are up for renewal, register on Tenders WA and check the Early Tenders Advice section on a regular basis.

    Tip: To get up to speed with quoting and tendering, attend one of the regular, free New to Quotes and Tenders seminars.