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P22 to P23 - The differences you need to know

Nhs Building Low Res

Article posted by Paul Harker

​If you have worked within an NHS Capital Projects team since 2016 you will be familiar with the P22 Construction Procurement Framework, but maybe you’re not yet familiar with the changes coming into effect in 2022. We take a look at what you need to know about the upcoming changes to this framework before it comes into effect.

The Crown Commercial Service (CCS), the central government’s procurement arm, has recently announced the exciting news that they will start the bidding in September for places on a new £30bn ‘mega-construction’ framework for public spending departments.

Included will be the fourth generation of the NHS ProCure framework, ProCure23 (P23), for the design and construction of NHS capital projects, with an expected cumulative spend of £9bn during its lifespan.

P23 will build on the previous heritage of the framework which over the past 19 years has successfully delivered across England over 1,200 projects with a cumulative spend of £9.7bn.

It will also take into account the changing needs of the NHS, especially after the previous year, and will better reflect and acknowledge other infrastructure and capital projects ongoing within the NHS.

The key aims of P23 are:

  • to provide extra delivery capacity;

  • to provide more flexibility for contractors and to allow opportunities to be accessed by smaller and regional firms;

  • to open up the very best modern practices in construction methods and digital infrastructure to the NHS;

  • to enable NHS clients to efficiently and quickly access experienced and proficient partners to support excellence in all aspects of NHS capital project delivery;

  • to strongly focus on delivering greener facilities, reduce carbon emissions and promote social value;

  • to ensure compliance with the UK Government’s Outsourcing and Construction Playbooks.

So, what are the key differences between P22 and P23?

The existing P22 arrangement is shared by six firms: BAM, Galliford Try, Graham, Tilbury Douglas, Kier, and Vinci/Sir Robert McAlpine joint venture IHP and has been extended until 30 June 2022 to enable continuity of design and construction services for the NHS until P23 becomes available for use by NHS clients.

P23 will run for four years and is to be split into five lots:

  1. covers healthcare construction works and associated services projects in England only that are valued less than £20M

  2. covers contracts valued between £20M and £70M

  3. covers contracts valued over £70M

  4. covers airfield works in all UK nations

  5. covers general construction works above £80M in the UK.

Significantly, P23 is to be split into three value-based lots ranging from under £20 million to over £70 million:

  1. for projects valued at less than £20m

  2. for projects valued between £20 - £70m

  3. for projects valued at over £70m.

Additionally, for the first time with P23 the smaller projects within the lower value lot, less than £20m, will be split geographically across the seven NHS England and NHS Improvement geographical regions. This is a clear attempt to open up framework opportunities to suitable regional and medium-sized firms, which will hopefully not only enhance delivery capacity but also increase local backing for proposed projects. The impact on recruitment is clear – we’d expect to see a significant increase in the demand for Capital Project Managers within the NHS nationwide.

P23 is also not intended to be the main sourcing route for the New Hospital Programme (NHP), for which separate market engagement and procurements will follow. However, NHP reserves the right to use P23 in the future.

Even now, with additional funding secured and some very exciting new projects commissioned, Cobalt’s dedicated NHS team have never seen the market so busy and are seeing an influx of roles before this change has come in.

If you’re a Capital Projects candidate looking for a new role or seeking to hire a Capital Projects professional, we’d love to hear from you. To arrange an initial conversation, please email me.

Article written by Paul Harker, Principal Consultant- NHS & Not For Profit.