CDR Submission to the IDC Inquiry

CDR made a submission to the IDC’s Inquiry on DFID’s use of contractors [link to IDC inquiry page] with the following key messages:


  • Contractors are key partners to DFID. They provide specialist technical expertise and enable DFID to deliver its development objectives.

  • DFID has continually improved its procurement, contract management, risk management and programme management processes. Contractors welcome these improvements and DFID’s focus on demonstrating the impact of its work overseas and value for money for the taxpayer.  

  • Despite this, changes to commercial contracting processes have had unintentional consequences, such as increasing the cost of delivering programmes and creating barriers to entry for smaller firms. Changes have often been made without sufficient consultation and without proper guidance for suppliers or support from the Department. 

  • The sector is more transparent than other parts of the development community. Contracted suppliers comply with a rigorous code of conduct and DFID has oversight of the design, implementation and monitoring of all contracts. Ensuring that transparency and compliance requirements are uniform across all government departments and DFID partners should be a priority. 


We recommended the following:

  • DFID requires a more coherent strategy for engagement with contractors. It should work in a more open and consultative way with these partners – particularly in the current political and media environment. Contractors would welcome the opportunity to work with the Department to design solutions to help DFID achieve its development and commercial objectives as well as raise standards in the industry. 

  • CDR is well-placed to support the Department in its engagement with contractors. We would welcome a forum for regular engagement and consultation with DFID.

Centre for Development Results Ltd. A company limited by guarantee, no 10010584. Registered Office: 1 Northfield Road, Reading RG1 8AH

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