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How to implement the Supplier Code of Conduct – Suppliers

Find out how to implement the Supplier Code of Conduct.

The Supplier Code of Conduct in action 

New contracts, agreements and purchase orders 

The Supplier Code of Conduct applies from 1 July 2017. 

The Supplier Code of Conduct applies to all: 

  • contracts, 
  • agreements  
  • purchase orders  

The Supplier Code of Conduct applies to the supply of: 

  • goods and services 
  • construction works and construction services. 

The Supplier Code of Conduct requires suppliers to acknowledge the minimum standards of behaviour when conducting business with the State.  

When entering large contracts and agreements, suppliers need to 

  • sign a commitment letter acknowledging the State’s minimum expectations and  
  • confirm that they will aspire to meet these expectations.  

The commitment letter is included in the invitation to supply documentation. The commitment letter is a compulsory part of a supplier’s submission. 

The terms and conditions of supply for low value, intermittent purchase order purchases includes the suppliers’ acknowledgement and commitment to the Code. Therefore suppliers do not need to complete a separate commitment letter. 

Subcontractors

Suppliers must tell related entities and subcontractors who support them in supplying goods, works or services to the State about the Supplier Code of Conduct. This will ensure that subcontractors conduct their business under the Code. 

Suppliers from outside Victoria 

The Supplier Code of Conduct recognises that suppliers may operate and provide goods, works or services from outside Victoria. Where the Code refers to the law, it means the law(s) in the place where the goods, works or services are purchased from.  

Corrective action process 

Suppliers need to self-assess their compliance with the Supplier Code of Conduct. 

Suppliers are encouraged to raise concerns or seek clarification on the Code with their contract manager. Refer to the Supplier Code of Conduct for guidance on additional reporting options. 

Suppliers must provide evidence and confirm their compliance with the Supplier Code of Conduct when asked to do so. This includes providing documents and records that support their compliance.  

Prepare offers to include the Supplier Code of Conduct 

During the tender stage, suppliers can report issues in relation to meeting the Supplier Code of Conduct. 

The Supplier Code of Conduct commitment letter must be completed for a supplier’s tender submission to be considered.  

The State will review the issue raised by the supplier and assess what impact it will have on the future contract. Issues are considered on a case-by-case basis subject to a risk-based approach.  

The tender submission is incomplete if the completed commitment letter is not included. The commitment letter is a compulsory part of the tender submission. 

Manage contracts to include the Supplier Code of Conduct 

Suppliers can report issues with meeting the standards of the Code after the contract is awarded. If the issue cannot be rectified, the deviation will be escalated under the contract issue resolution process.  

Failure to aspire to meet the Code will be treated in the same way as any other contract deviation. The contract manager will work with the supplier and seek to rectify the issue as soon as practicable. 

Tools and support 

This content on this page is taken from the Ensuring Ethical Procurement Government Supplier fact sheet.

Suppliers are encouraged to raise concerns or seek clarification with their contract manager. 

Reviewed 24 September 2019

Buying for Victoria

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