Network Rail Infrastructure has issued a market sounding briefing and questionnaire in advance of finalising a proposal to procure a claims handling and litigation service provider to work with the company’s existing insurance team.
The company said it wanted “to welcome the market to engage with the opportunity to contribute innovation, experience and deliver technical capability, which is intended to maximise the quality of Network Rail's claims handling service”.
“In line with Network Rail’s programme-wide engagement strategy, Network Rail is committed to becoming an ‘informed’ client with excellent visibility and understanding of the market and the supply chains and customers operating within them,” it said.
“At this stage of the pre-procurement, Network Rail are committed to engaging with the industry as fully as possible in order to inform and refine our overall strategic approach. Network Rail is also committed to ensuring the market is appropriately informed of Network Rail’s emerging commercial approach and technical requirements."
The company said the purpose of the market sounding was to:
- communicate the plans for the future procurement and share the overall programme objectives and developing procurement strategy,
- provide all potential suppliers with the opportunity to give feedback on a number of critical areas, in the form of a questionnaire, to help inform the refinement of Network Rail’s approach and the impacts of different approaches which may be considered,
- obtain information from the market on an equal and transparent basis,
- register a list of interested parties and plan to engage them,
- ensure that all registered bidders have equal access to the information being provided as part of the market engagement.
Network Rail stressed that the market sounding was not itself a call for competition under any EU procurement process (whether pursuant to the Public Contracts regulations 2015, the Utilities Contracts Regulations 2016, the Concession Contracts Regulations 2016 or otherwise). The company said it did not commit itself to commencing any such procurement process.