How to pull on the public purse strings: CAANZ and government release best practice guide for agency selection

Every year, government agencies spend more than $60 million on the purchase of advertising and media services in New Zealand. There are already some fairly rigid structures in place to make sure public entities get the best partner for the best price. But, after 12 months work by a team of senior agency and government communications practitioners on establishing Government Best Practice Guidelines for Selecting Advertising and Media Agencies, CAANZ and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet have come up with a few more.

The guidelines were created to assist both government entities and their partners in media and advertising agencies to achieve more effective outcomes in relation to agency procurement and selection. And a core aim of the publication is to give agencies confidence they are taking part in a fair, transparent and agreed selection process, one that reflects the time and commitment required to respond to the invitation to pitch.

“While on one level, these guidelines are about the purchase of advice and services, at another, and deeper, level they represent a starting point, a sound basis, for mutually rewarding and productive relationships. Good relationships are two way,” the introduction to the document says. “…The guidelines begin with a set of overarching principles upon which the suggested selection processis based, before describing the processes for three categories of tender based on budget size. However, the categories, and the budget size they represent, are not cast in stone. The guidelines set out to achieve value for money outcomes through linking effort expended on a tender process to the financial benefit for the successful tenderer. From time to time, there may well be situations that the suggested principles and processes do not cover.”

CAANZ chief executive Paul Head says implementation of the guidelines will help the process become more efficient, transparent and cost effective for all parties and help ensure government entities engage advertising and media agencies that will provide the best possible response to the communications brief.

“These are guidelines, not rules. But we expect that they will be adopted by government entities over the next few months, in terms of both managing any pitch processes and building strong ongoing relationships with communications partners” says Head.

Click here to see the guidelines.


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