Public Procurement and Property

Publication of refreshed Fair Work First in Procurement Guidance

March 7, 2024 by No Comments | Category Best practice, Fair Work, Scottish Procurement, Sustainable Procurement, Sustainable Procurement Tools

Updated guidance on Fair Work First (FWF) in Procurement is now available. It was drafted in consultation with representatives from the public, private sector, third sector and included the Fair Work Convention. This replaces the previous Best Practice Guidance and Toolkit published in 2018.

The purpose of this updated guidance is to support implementation of FWF, the Scottish Government’s policy for driving high quality fair work and workforce diversity across the labour market in Scotland by providing more detailed practical guidance.

The guidance reflects changes to the Scottish Government’s policy on mandating payment of at least the real Living Wage to workers involved in delivering public contracts and the two additional criteria that were added to FWF in 2021. Fair Work First in Procurement policy has been in place since September 2021 and this refreshed guidance has been published to support the implementation of that policy.

The updated guidance builds on statutory guidance published in May 2022 and details each FWF criterion, reflecting their mutually reinforcing nature and creating a stronger message on how they should be used collectively to seek to address challenges in the labour market.

Key elements include:

  • new model questions
  • a table of definitions and intended benefits for each of the seven FWF criteria
  • new detail on taking a proportionate approach to implementing FWF as part of a procurement tendering exercise
  • guidance on how to evaluate responses from organisations of different sizes

Sources of information and support

The updated guidance is available from the Sustainable Procurement Tools website.

A short video drawing out the key changes to the guidance is available here – Fair Work First – Update Video

The Supplier Development Programme (SDP) provides free support in tendering to Scottish-based SMEs, supported businesses and third sector organisations through free training and events.

For further information on public procurement in Scotland please visit

Please email enquiries to

Follow us online:

Follow us on Twitter     Follow us on Vimeo  Follow us on LinkedIn


Leave a comment

By submitting a comment, you understand it may be published on this public website. Please read our privacy policy to see how the Scottish Government handles your information.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *