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Local government issues around procurement and contract management

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Local government issues around procurement and contract management

Over the last five years, on average, councils spent approximately $7.7 billion on goods and services each year.

The identified deficiencies in procurement and contract management controls across 32 councils were about strengthening internal controls to ensure they achieve value for money for their communities for their purchasing activities. The common deficiencies that have been identified this year include the following:

  • Councils are unable to demonstrate that they obtained value for money from their procurement process. Generally due to
    • not obtaining sufficient tenders/quotes for the purchase of goods or services, and
    • Insufficient documentation resulting in perceived transparency issues for supplier tendering and selection processes.
  • Councils approved the purchase of goods and invoices after receiving them instead of before they were ordered.
  • Councils either did not have a contract register or did not have a complete contract register that would enable them to manage their contracts effectively.


A contract register is a good place to start. It is a list of all contracts that the council or authority  has entered into with its vendors. It contains important information such as:

  • start and end dates of the contract,
  • the total contracted amount and annual amounts,
  • contract manager(s) assigned to the contract,
  • a link to or reference to a copy of the contract held easily accessible, and
  • a trigger date for renewal of the contract.

Source (Local government 2020 | Queensland Audit Office)

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