Title: Random selection: winning the lottery in construction contracts

Authors: Robert Eadie; Martin McCavigan

Addresses: School of the Built Environment, University of Ulster, Jordanstown Campus, Shore Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT37 0QB, UK ' Rivers Agency, Armagh Area Office, Unit 4A, Seagoe Industrial Estate, Seagoe, Co. Armagh, BT63 5QE, UK

Abstract: Government procurement accounts for 10%-15% of gross domestic product. The majority of this is below the European Union financial thresholds and completed under local policy. From 2012, random selection (RS) has been used as part of the selection mechanism. For the first time, this paper analyses and compares RS to the rotation process used in frameworks. The empirical data was gathered from the public sector client and private sectors via structured Limesurvey™ questionnaires. The results indicate that RS is considered transparent with high accountability. However, concerns are raised over safeguards against abuse or manipulation. The impact of using RS on quality, value for money and open competition indicated greater private sector concern. Agreement was achieved on it not always providing the best economic operator, that size of organisations involved does not matter and there is adequate competition. However, the procurement policy for the adoption of RS for certain contract types was deemed correct.

Keywords: random selection; construction contracts; government policy; government procurement; UK; United Kingdom; transparency; accountability; abuse; manipulation; quality; value for money; open competition.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPM.2016.075264

International Journal of Procurement Management, 2016 Vol.9 No.2, pp.185 - 205

Received: 07 Jan 2015
Accepted: 01 Feb 2015

Published online: 09 Mar 2016 *

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