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Home / Specification Template

Specification Template

A specification is like a statement of needs and this can be written in different ways.

1.Work with stakeholders to define the requirement. Procurement staff should not write the specification because the user knows their needs best.

2. Suppliers need it spelt out to them in an easy to understand manner. They will use the specification as the basis for explaining how they will meet your requirements.

3. A specification is accompanied by evaluation criteria. Suppliers need to know how their bids will be evaluated and what the buyer is seeking as part of their solution. The evaluation criteria also have a scoring table for marking. More information can be found on the evaluation page. For detailed breakdown purchase an evaluation example from A- Z templates section.

There are 2 types you can use, Conformance and Performance.(also called functional/outcome/output specification)


The buyer dictates the exact requirements. The supplier is not supposed to propose something different they just need to submit a bid that meets the requirement. Typically this isn’t used in most procurement exercises. Procurement managers prefer output spec.


  • Suitable for specs. such as design or engineering or where the requirement must conform to tolerance levels or exact requirement
  • Specific materials required
  • Composition required by law i.e. to conform to H&S standards


  • Difficult to write a specification that is conformance as suppliers have no room for innovation
  • More time consuming
  • The customer must know exactly what they want in advance.

Performance Spec.


  • Easier to draft
  • Knowledge might be limited in-house, state your requirements and the onus is on the supplier to provide the solution
  • Innovation may bring about cost or efficiency savings
  • Wider supply base


  • Introduction
  • Tender instructions/ compliance
  • Background to organisation/ department
  • Project Requirement
  • Price

How procurement adds value

  • Make sure it is easy to understand
  • Challenge when the requirements are overspecified
  • Liaising with the stakeholder groups to identify requirements across the organisation
  • Advisory on terms of legal requirements
  • Advisory capacity
  • Make v Buy
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