Material Supplied based on Sample
9.0 Brief Introduction:
There was requirement of stationary items in various departments for which a combined tender was published. An open tender was published for the supply of Standard Stationary items as per samples.
As per tender conditions, the bidders were required to see the sample at MDL prior to bidding. The required item was a defined coded item and no specific parameters were defined in the system except dimensions. The contact details of the executive for showing sample to the bidders were also mentioned in the tender. It was also clarified in the tender that on receipt of order, the supplier has to get the sample approved first and then bulk supply is to be made. For most the items a sample was provided to the suppliers along with the Purchase Order copy. For one of the items where only dimensions were mentioned in the tender/PO, the supplier contacted dealing executives for approval of sample. The approving authority was not specified in the tender/PO. The executive neither approved the sample nor he could not provide the sample to the supplier as it was out of stock at that point of time. Finally, the supplier supplied the material as per the sample he had shown to the commercial executive. It was also noted that a few items where the quantity was practically not feasible to be split to give purchase preference to MSME, it was decided not to apply purchase preference for MSME at Price Bid Opening stage though the quantities were known at tendering stage only.
During receipt inspection the item was rejected due to variation in dimension w.r.t. the dimensions mentioned in PO. There was a sample available with the Receipt Inspection Officer and it was found that the supplied material was not up to the mark w.r.t. the feel, colour and finish of the required item. Had the dimension of the said material been as per PO, the material of the poor quality would have to be accepted as the same was neither specified in the tender nor the sample was shown to the vendor.
As a systemic improvement the following was suggestedto be incorporated in future tenders/orders to avoid recurrences of such circumstances and the same was promulgated through a memorandum from concerned Functional Director.
(i) Dealing Commercial Executive should thoroughly scrutinize the offers for compliance w.r.t. the technical requirements mentioned in the tender. A techno-commercial comparative statement (CST) of the bids is to be prepared by the dealing commercial executive clearly indicating response of the bidders to each clause/requirement of tender.
(ii) If the bids are required to be invited based on samples, the tender should clearly indicate the items for which samples are applicable and the name/contact no. of the executive responsible for showing sample to the interested bidders must be indicated in the tender. The procedure, time line and the approving authority for sample approval prior to bulk supply must be indicated in the tender and then in purchase order under a separate clause.
(iii) In case of tenders where the bidders are required to see the sample of any item prior to submitting their bid, a record is to be maintained indicating the name of the vendor and its representative visiting MDL for viewing the sample w.r.t. respective tender no. An undertaking in MDL prescribed format for having viewed the sample of specific line item of a tender can be maintained by dealing executive, if applicable.
(iv) If purchase preference to MSE manufacturers is not practical due to very low value or quantity of the items, it should be clearly indicated in the tender itself. However, this should be brought to the attention of the CFA while obtaining draft tender approval.
9.3 Impact and Benefits:
With the promulgation of the directives as suggested, the possibility of procedural lapses and rejection of materials based on sample was eliminated and accountability was ensured w.r.t. sample approval.