18 suppliers have been appointed to the £100m Social Housing Emerging Disruptors (SHED) framework launched by Procurement for Housing
The SHED framework will enable social landlords to compliantly procure cutting edge, innovative services and technologies to support with retrofit, development and fire safety targets. SHED is worth up to £100m over three years.
Covid-19 has posed many challenges, least of all material and labour shortages. These shortages, in combination with a surging demand for low carbon, building safety and development works have created an unparalleled environment for housing providers. Housing providers are forced to think outside the box and look for fresh, unorthodox solutions to deliver competing strategic objectives.
Breaking away from tradition
Traditionally, public sector procurement has been considered a barrier to innovation. Red tape and bureaucracy make it more difficult to buy emerging solutions from entrepreneurial SMEs and micro-organisations. Suppliers are unable to scale their solutions and invest in further innovation because buying teams cannot procure services compliantly under existing rules.
Procurement for Housing has addressed these issues by creating a framework that is flexible, future-proof and light touch in terms of paperwork and procurement: the SHED portal. This will enable housing providers to conduct a simple desk-based supplier selection process and identify the supplier that can best meet their needs. The PfH’s procurement team will provide pricing information and support the contracting process.
Innovators appointed on the SHED framework include the following:
- Bimdl, a blockchain-backed building information modelling (BIM) solution
- Power Circle Projects, which provides democratised, decentralised low carbon smart energy solutions
- Chameleon Digitization an organisation using machine learning to identify dangerous gas canisters being taken into high rise buildings
- Q-Bot, a robotic underfloor insulation installer and Green Action Trust which supports social landlords to improve the sustainability of their local environment
PfH worked with the Proptech Innovation Network to find suppliers at the forefront of housing technology, data and software solutions and service design to join the framework. A second generation SHED2 framework is due to launch in the Autumn of 2022. It will bring to market those innovations developed since the first framework launched.
‘There is urgent need for innovation’
Neil Butters, head of procurement at PfH commented:
“Over the past 12 months, our members have been telling us about the perfect storm of challenges they’re facing with global supply chain disruption, a widespread skills crisis and huge pressure to meet fire safety, net zero and house building targets.
“There is urgent need for innovation that can help them address these problems, but public procurement regulations just haven’t caught up. Housing providers can’t compliantly buy the innovative services they need.”
“The government is currently changing public procurement rules, but that reform might not come into force until 2023. We wanted to be brave and unpick the challenges around procuring innovation which is still a fairly intangible, transient category of goods and services.
‘Pioneering, future-thinking organisations’
“It was important we did that here and now for the sector, rather than sitting on our hands – no one else is really tackling it.”
“Many of the suppliers we’ve appointed to the framework are small or micro businesses. We wanted to unlock their services for the social housing sector – these are pioneering, future-thinking organisations, many with a focus on sustainability or building safety.
“The SHED is about PfH supporting social landlords to identify and adopt innovation that will improve the lives of tenants.”
For further information about the SHED framework please visit: procurementforhousing