Developing effective scopes of work and specifications

A one-day workshop

This very practical and focused one-day workshop enables end-users, technical experts, proponents, internal customers and other key stakeholders to work with procurement and contracting to develop effective specifications and scopes of work, to ensure fit-for-purpose outcomes. The programme empowers participants to collaborate with all key stakeholders.

Learning objectives

This workshop will help participants:

  • Understand the importance and value of clear and effective specifications
  • Differentiate between the different methods of creating specifications and when to apply them
  • Develop robust specification templates to ensure consistency
  • Understand the use of appropriate language (critical to creating effective specifications)
  • Appreciate the need to develop specifications in cooperation with stakeholders
  • Make use of techniques such as value analysis and value engineering to define ‘fit for purpose’ in the context of creating effective specifications
  • Embed key KPIs into the specification to ensure delivery
  • Manage and mitigate legal and contractual risks in the specification

Who should attend?

This course is designed for all those who have direct or indirect responsibility for the development of effective and robust scopes of work and specifications. This could include end-users, technical experts, proponents, project managers, finance, internal customers, and other key stakeholders who need to collaborate with procurement and contracting to develop robust scopes of work and specifications. Those seeking a refresher in this subject, to consolidate existing experience and knowledge, would also benefit.


This one-day programme can also be delivered virtually.

The expert trainer adopts a proactive, participative, and participant-centred approach with emphasis on the practical application of the tools, techniques and templates discussed. The learning needs to be embedded into the fabric of the organisation and the trainer uses context-based case studies and other tasks to achieve this.

Special features

The content of this course has been cross-mapped with established competency frameworks and other international standards.

Certificates of attendance are provided on request (for CPD purposes: the programme qualifies for six hours, which for most professional bodies translates as six points).

The majority of the training we deliver is either tailored or completely bespoke. This workshop can therefore be delivered entirely as advertised, or it can be tailored to your particular requirements, or we can simply take it as a starting point for a conversation with you before we draft a completely bespoke programme for you – the choice is yours.

Expert trainer

Dr Ray Carter runs his own international training and development consultancy, specialising in procurement. A prolific author, his fourth book, Practical Contract Management, with Steve Kirby and Alan Oxenbury, was published in 2012. He has also had numerous articles and papers published in journals such as Supply Management and the Centre for Advanced Procurement’s Praxis publication. Ray is Chairman of the Procurement Best Practice Forum, which is made up of many large blue-chip organisations, the purpose of which is to identify and disseminate supply chain management best practices. Ray’s now famous ‘10 Cs’ of supplier evaluation model, first published in 1995, has become an accepted model for the evaluation of suppliers and contractors and has been adopted by many organisations. It is also part of the CIPS level 4 syllabus.

In recent years, he has undertaken training and consultancy assignments across the UK and around the world for organisations such as DWP, NHS, Shell, Lucas Engineering and Systems, the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, BRC, Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappijn BV, Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations (ZADCO), NDC, Ericsson, British Aerospace, Marconi, BBC, Magnox, Ordnance Survey, Chevron, Caspian Pipeline Consortium, Tengzichevroil Company, Coca-Cola, Shell International BV, IMechE, African Development Bank, United Healthcare, MLM, SEPA, Yorkshire Water, East Lothian Council, Medway Council, National Grid, City of Bradford MDC, etc.

1 Introduction

  • Learning outcomes
  • Learning styles
  • Plan for the day

2 The importance of effective specifications

  • Scopes of work
  • Impact of poor scopes of work
  • Examples of costly errors

3 The critical role of language

  • Terminology in creating effective specifications and scopes of work
  • Problems of communication
  • Lack of detail or too prescriptive

4 Encouraging cooperation

  • Technical and commercial experts with responsibility for developing robust effective specifications and scopes of work
  • Managing stakeholders’ expectations
  • Working with contractors

5 Types of specification

  • Exploring and using the various approaches to the development of appropriate specifications and scopes of work
  • Output
  • Performance
  • Technical
  • Functional
  • Solutions-based

6 The role of value analysis

  • Value engineering in the process of developing scopes of work and specifications

7 Specifications and contracts

  • The legal and contractual impact of poor specifications and scopes of work
  • How to embed scopes of work and specification outputs into tender and quotation documents

8 Specifications as a management tool

  • Developing KPIs and SLAs framed around robust effective specifications and scopes of work
  • Negotiating with contractors
  • Negotiating with stakeholders

Any questions? Please just give us a call on 01582 463463 – we’re here to help!