The Problem

Tender and RfP evaluation criteria have historically focussed on price and quality – ignoring a range of sustainability issues considered important today.

Remanufactured furniture creates a range of economic, environmental and social benefits that, while highly desirable, are rarely considered in tender evaluation.

The Solution: Balanced Evaluation Criteria

Evaluation criteria and their weightings are set by end users, not Procurement Departments, and therefore offer a way to improve the sustainability of projects.

OFRA has compiled a list, below, of best practice evaluation criteria that incorporate economic, environmental and social concerns better than conventional criteria.

Adopting some or all of these criteria enables projects to better consider the full range of impacts of its decisions and create a level playing field for Circular Economy solutions to compete.

These are written to be cut and pasted into tenders and Requests for Proposals.

Best Practice Evaluation Criteria

Existing Furniture

Detail in your proposal how you intend to manage unwanted existing furniture to achieve the highest value in the waste hierarchy (i.e. reuse, repair, remanufacture, recycle, waste to energy, landfill)

Include in your price the cost of disposal of existing furniture that will not be reused because we need to assess the full lifecycle cost of this project.

Landfill Minimisation

How do you minimise the amount of office furniture going to landfill in the UK? Provide evidence of past performance.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Minimisation

What are the embodied greenhouse gas emissions in the furniture that you will supply compared to furniture made from virgin resources?

Remanufactured Furniture

What percentage of the furniture will be remanufactured? Remanufactured furniture is preferred due to the associated cost and environmental benefits, as well as the UK Government’s 5% target for reused and refurbished furniture.

BREEAM and LEED credits

Explain how the furniture that you provide will enable us to score BREEAM and LEED credits.

End-of-life Management

What will you do with the furniture when it is no longer required or no longer serviceable? How will this minimise removal and disposal costs? Provide evidence of your past performance.

Social Value

In context of the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012, describe how you ensure wider social, economic, environmental and cultural benefits.  Please refer only to examples from past projects.

UK Jobs

How does your furniture contribute to employment in the UK? Please provide an indicative estimate of the percentage of the cost of your furniture which goes to UK-based labour.

National Balance of Payments

Provide an indicative percentage of the cost of your furniture that flows out of the UK through purchase of fully assembled items, components and raw materials.

How much of your furniture was manufactured outside of the UK? Note that local assembly of overseas-made components does not count as UK manufacturing.

Local Benefits

How will your company and the award of future contracts benefit communities in the local* area to project? Provide evidence of doing this in past projects.

SME Benefits

How do you intend to involve local* SME’s in the provision of furniture under future contracts? Provide evidence of doing this in past projects.

Social Enterprise Benefits

How do you intend to involve social enterprises in the provision of furniture? Provide evidence of doing this in past projects.


*OFRA suggests using the definition of ‘local’ cited in the TOM Social Value Calculator: “For contracts for a Local Authority the local area is defined by the Local Authority boundaries. For other contracts where the relevant economic, social and environmental geography spans more than one Local Authority, multiple adjacent Local Authorities could be specified. Alternatively a 10-20-30 mile radius from the project’s centre can be specified.”