Alston guides SMEs to govt contracts

Minister for Communications and IT, Senator Richard Alston, has announced the launch of a new guide designed to assist Australian SMEs in securing more government ICT contracts.

Titled Selling ICT to Government — A Guide for SMEs, the manual is part of the government’s ICT SME Facilitation Package announced last year that aims to help SMEs establish alliances with key players in the industry and access a greater share of the Commonwealth ICT market.

The Guide will help SMEs identify potential opportunities and offers tips on how to respond to government Requests For Tender, how to put together a professional bid, how to negotiate, and how to successfully deliver goods and services. It also provides information on establishing partnerships — particularly with multinational corporations — with the aim of tendering for government business.

Following the announcement, shadow minister for IT, Kate Lundy, attacked the government’s ICT procurement policy.

Lundy accused the government of trying to tie up the ICT industry up in a talk-fest in order to stifle deserved criticism.

“Unless the Howard Government makes a concerted effort to remove the barriers that inhibit ICT small businesses from selling to Federal Departments and Agencies, the impact of this guide will be minimal,” she said.