Opportunities to work with us

Winchester City Council works with a wide range of partners to deliver services, projects and programmes. This includes private sector companies of all sizes, community organisations, individuals and public sector agencies. We are keen to expand our range of delivery partners in order to ensure that we are always offering the best results for our residents, our business community and our visitors.

If you have worked with us before...

If you have worked with us before and are simply checking this page for new opportunities, please go to the South East Business Portal or Contracts Finder for the latest specifications from Winchester City Council, and from other councils across the region.

Commissioning Approach

The Council has adopted a 'commissioning approach' which puts our customers first. We commission in different ways to make positive changes for the Winchester community, and opportunities can take the form of one-off contracts, annual grants or partnership agreements. When we commission goods or services, we look for innovation, value for money and a genuine understanding of the needs of the Winchester District. Find out more about this approach on our Commissioning Process page.


Not-for-Profit Organisations

If you are a not-for-profit organisation or a small to medium enterprise, you may find it helpful to read the below information on our commissioning processes to find out more about how to bid for contracts, how they will be evaluated and how we will monitor performance.

Small Businesses

If you are reading this, you are likely to be a relatively small business - even a freelancer or microbusiness - or an organisation that works predominantly with small to medium businesses (SMEs) such as a Chamber of Commerce or business advisor. Whatever you are, and whatever you do, you may find that there are opportunities to work with Winchester City Council to improve the lives of those who live and work in our District.

Key Areas

There are two key ways in which you are most likely to wish to work with us.

1. Grants:

The Job Seekers Access to Work Grant Scheme is a one-off grant award of up to £1,000. It is for the sole benefit of the job seeker, as set out in a successful application form and is designed to remove any practical barriers which might prevent the job seeker from taking on their role. The grant can be applied for at any time during the financial year using a short application form.

The Apprenticeship Grant Scheme supports employees and their apprentices by covering some of the basic costs, which might otherwise be difficult to finance. These range from a simple set of work clothes for someone who has been out of employment for a while to the costs of travel to the training venue each week.

The Business Start Up Grant Scheme is a one-off payment to a start-up business. The grant can be applied for at any time during the financial year, and can be for a maximum of £2000.

The Micro-Business Development Grant Scheme is a one-off payment to help support and develop your business. It may be paid as one instalment via a direct bank payment (BACS). The grant can be applied for at any time during the financial year and can be for a maximum of £2,000.

2. Commissions: when the Council advertises a commission, you may feel that your business can deliver the results set out in the specification, or you may feel that you could work with another business or even a not-for-profit organisation to achieve this. You do not have to be based in the Winchester District, but you will need to think about your capacity, skills and stability, as well as your knowledge of the Winchester District in some cases. Bidding for a commission is like pitching for other contracts, but we will only commission projects and services which are identified as a need through our Community Strategy or in the Council's annual Portfolio Plans. We will want you to demonstrate in your bid how you are going to achieve meaningful changes for local people.

How to be considered for Commissions

Your first step, if you wish to be considered for commissions in future, is to register your organisation as a supplier on the South East Business Portal and/or Contracts Finder website.

Commissioning Process

What is Commissioning?

Commissioning is simply about getting things done. It is not new for councils, who routinely outsource, buy in freelance help or create new partnerships to address the challenges of the moment. However, for Winchester City Council, commissioning represents a new way of thinking about the value which can be obtained for our residents by looking at things from another perspective. Please refer to the documents at the foot of this page for more information about what we mean by commissioning.

When we invite organisations and individuals to bid for commissions, we will be clear from the start about:

  • the results we require, without being over-prescriptive about how to do this
  • the way we will evaluate your bid
  • the approach we will take to evaluating the success of the commission.

South East Business Portal

South East Business Portal and Contracts Finder

On these two websites you will find you can register for alerts, which will let you know when a commission is being advertised which might be appropriate for your organisation to bid for.

You can also find specifications for Winchester City Council commissions with details of how to bid for them.

You must register as a supplier to bid for an opportunity. If you represent a not-for-profit group, charity or social enterprise you may find it helpful to read our 'not-for-profit organisations' page.