Dear Wigan and Leigh College,
Could you please provide a copy of the successful tender for your HR and Payroll system.
I am writing to you in response to your Freedom of Information request submitted to Wigan & Leigh College dated 25th January 2018.
We will respond to you as soon as possible and in any case no later than 22nd February 2018 which is 20 Working days after the receipt of your request.
Should we need to contact regarding the request we will do so via email.
If you have any further questions or queries please don’t hesitate to contact me on 01942 761424 or via email [email address],uk
Data Compliance Officer
Wigan & Leigh College
PO Box 53
wiganleighcollege @wiganleighcol @wiganleighcol
With reference to your request for information under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000.
I am writing back in relation to your request for information, dated 25th
January 2018, for information of the successful tender for the Wigan & Leigh
College HR and Payroll system.
I can advise that we deem this request to be of commercial interest and
therefore is exempt from disclosure under Section 43 of the Freedom of
Section 43(2) of the Act states that information is exempt if its disclosure
is likely to prejudice the commercial interest of any person
We believe that businesses should be allowed to trade freely and effectively
without the possibility of unnecessary disclosure of their information. In
releasing details of pricing, financial information and operating methods,
that a company have submitted for a tender that it has entered into a
contract with the College, would discourage competition. In making the
decision to withhold information, and as per the ICO guidance, the College
has in both cases considered the prejudice test. The withheld information
clearly relates to a commercial activity (provision of an HR / Payroll
system) and scrutiny of a current providers winning submission bid to the
College for this service. The activity is conducted in a competitive
environment to identify the best bidder, gain best value for money and in
which companies compete to submit the best bid. Therefore the nature of the
requested information falls within the scope of the exemption under Section
Release of information under the Act cannot be viewed in the context of a
limited disclosure to the applicant, it should be considered as an applicant
blind release into the public domain. The way that a tenderer choses to
present its material and answer tender evaluation criteria and questions is
likely to be an important means by which the College is able to distinguish
between and evaluate the commercial and technical merit of competing tenders
in order to arrive at the most advantageous bid. Therefore, if future
tenderers were able to see successful bids submitted by competitors during a
procurement process, it is likely that the competitiveness of this selection
process and the College's ability to achieve best value would be hindered,
thus harming the College's interests.
Disclosure would also be prejudicial to the successful bidder in that
disclosure would be that if rivals found out how they presented their tender
submission, it would put them at a disadvantage in any future negotiations.
We have also considered the public interest test in relation to this request
and conclude that there is a clear public interest in allowing companies to
trade freely and effectively without the possibility of unnecessary
of their information. The possibility of the release of details of financial
information and operating methods which were successfully submitted for a
winning tender, would clearly discourage bidders and by extension
competition. There is also a clear public interest in ensuring companies
author and submit unique, accurate bids that reflect their own practices and
capabilities, thereby enabling public authorities to carry out a true
assessment. We believe there is a definite and clear public interest in
enabling the College to secure maximum value and quality through the
effective application of a tender process. We therefore believe that the
balance of public interest lies in withholding the exempt information.
If you believe that we have not dealt with your request appropriately Wigan
& Leigh College has a
complaints process. Complaints must be received within 10 working days of
the date you receive the
written response to your request and must be made using the College's
complaint form (CF1), which
is available from the Student Services team and the College's website.
If you are unhappy with the outcome of the appeal or complaint, you have the
right to apply directly to
the Information Commissioner for a decision. The Information Commissioner
can be contacted at:
Information Commissioner's Office
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