Procurement and purchasing glossary (Part 6)

Blog | May 7, 2016

Procurrement and purchasing glossaryOur procurement and purchasing glossary covers as much of the jargon and technical terminology around procurement as we can think of. This time we look at entries for letters P and Q – from Parent Company Guarantee to Quotation.

You can find the previous entries here – parts 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5.

Parent company guarantee

Contractual assurance (provided by the parent company) that works assigned to a smaller company (which it owns) will be completed by the parent company should the smaller company fail to deliver.


A long-term relationship between buyer and supplier with mutually-beneficial objectives such as best practice and competitive advantage.


A right granted to protect an invention from usage, reproduction, selling or importing for a period of time.

Performance bonds

Guarantees generated by insurers for the benefit of clients. These bonds, paid for by the contractor, protect the client against lost value of work if the contractor cannot complete.


See Prior Information Notice.

Preferred supplier list

A list of contractors formed following a competitive tendering exercise. Featured Memo are approved to deliver required goods/services.

Pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ)

A questionnaire to be completed by contractors interested in tendering for a specific contract. Responses on subjects such as experience, turnover, technical expertise and in-house capacity enable buyers to assess suitability for tender invitation.

Pricing schedules

A list of goods or services potentially required from contractors within a contract, each with relevant price stated.

Prime contractor

A managing contractor handed responsibility for coordination of sub-contractors and delivery of the project on time and to budget.

Prior information notice (PIN)

The notification, via the European Union’s Official Journal, by an authority of an intention to procure in the future. In certain instances this may speed up the early stages of a tender exercise as contractors are alerted.

Private finance initiative (PFI)

An option for funding public services involving the sourcing of upfront capital from private bodies to enable service delivery. This cost is then repaid in more manageable lease instalments.

Procurement card (P card, Purchasing card)

A company charge card that allows goods or services to be purchased from certain suppliers (and up to a certain value) without following usual administrative processes.

Procurement directive

The key directive (orders dictating particular results are achieved) relating to public sector procurement is Directive 2014/24/EU. Often referred to as the ‘new’ directive.

Project definition statement (PDS)

A document which outlines project scope, objectives, and participant roles and responsibilities. Used for reference throughout a project’s duration.

Public concession contract

An agreement where a supplier operates, maintains and develops works or services (for provision of water or energy supply, for example) for a given period.

Public Contracts Regulations 2006

The UK legislation based on the ‘old’ directive (Public Sector Directive 2004/18/EC).

Public Contracts Regulations 2015

The UK legislation based on the current EU Procurement Directive. Specifies procedures for award of contracts.

Public Sector Directive 2004/18/EC

The directive replaced by Directive 2014/24/EU (see Procurement Directive). Often referred to as the ‘old’ directive.

Public service contract

A contract for the supply of services to a public body.

Public supply contract

A contract for the supply of goods to a public body.

Public works contract

A contract for carrying out works (generally construction) for a public body.

Purchase order (PO)

A commercial document, specifying goods, quantities, prices and terms and conditions, used by a buyer to place an order with a supplier.

Quality assurance (QA)

The discipline of ensuring quality and fitness of purpose are achieved, and mistakes and defects are avoided.

Qualified tender

A tender which has had to be qualified as it does not meet intended requirements. Such tenders are not usually acceptable.


A price communicated by a contractor, either verbally or in writing, in response to a request relating to required goods, works or services.

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