Roads consultants and contractors scoring highest under the Highways Agency's new supplier rating system do not necessarily stand the best chance of winning work, the Agency warned this week.
Lower ranked firms with strong track records and could overtake them in the final assessments of bids, said supply chain manager Gary Wright.
'One of the things that is concerning me a little is the absolute fixation on CAT scores, ' said Wright.
He said that CAT scores would form part of the process for short listing firms for highways work over £5M. Track record on similar projects would also count for 20% of the overall rating during short listing.
And an 'overview' assessment factor will also be used before final vendor ratings are calculated. This will take into account how much work a firm already has with the Agency to ensure that no one dominates the market.
It would also account for 'exceptional events' like accidents, which could count against firms implicated in them.
Once shortlisted, contractors and consultants would be questioned on their ability to control costs, deliver on time and minimise defects.