Supply to Network Rail

Welcome to supplying to Network Rail


Upcoming tenders
Our schedules are updated every four weeks:
Integrated work schedule Thameslink project tenders
The following schedule includes tenders for our National Supply Chain such as:

  • Infrastructure materials (rail, sleepers, ballast, switches and crossings)
  • Heavy on-track plant (stoneblowers, rail grinders, rail delivery and engineering trains)
  • Collection, road haulage and safe disposal services

Tender opportunities (2 MB Excel)
Industry and Partners
We’re striving to make it easier for you to do business with us by providing more definitive information and quicker responses

Network Rail has listened to its customers and taken action to make it easier for you to invest with us by:

  • Creating template contractual agreements, approved by the Office of Rail Regulation
  • Establishing dedicated Route Enhancements teams
  • Strengthening our Projects & Investments teams and training them in professional project management skills to help deliver third party projects
  • Providing better information and improved access to specialised business contacts

Some facts and figures…
Third party expenditure on enhancements to the network is estimated to be between £200-300 million per annum, or around. £1 billion, over the next three years.
There are over 200 significant schemes each year
See the latest on our ambitious plans for station development
Your proposals are welcomed
We welcome proposals to enhance the network and will work proactively with customers and stakeholders to develop their ideas. We also need to manage potential risks to the operational railway and therefore must balance the proposed enhancements against our current operational business and existing customer and stakeholder requirements. The earlier that Network Rail is involved in the development of a project, the greater focus we can give to influencing its scope and facilitating its delivery. While this will make the proposal more likely to be compatible with our existing obligations, it can also add value to the proposed output by providing a robust assessment of any interface risks with our existing operation, maintenance and renewal activities, as well as understanding how the proposal fits with Route Utilisation Strategies Supply of works, services or products.

We spend circa £7 billion annually on works, services and bought-in goods. We are committed to maximising the value delivered from every supplier that we deal with.
Every year we take a survey of our suppliers to improve our understanding of their perceptions of us. This survey includes procurement practices and many of the comments received have been acted on through a significant programme of transformation. We have taken five primary actions:

  • A review of purchase to pay processes and implementation of iProcurement
  • The development of a strategic sourcing process to manage commercial ativity consistently
  • Launch of a supplier account management process for key suppliers
  • A review of the qualification and assurance processes
  • A refresh of our standard suite of contracts

Each of these is a significant project in its own right and demonstrates clearly our commitment to improving supplier relationships.
We have established 30 category families which cover our entire expenditure profile. As part of this, we’ve defined the scope of these categories by taking each of the Achilles Link-Up codes and connecting them to one of the category families.
Category strategies consider the category from a company-wide perspective and use historic and more importantly future demand and market analysis to define a three to five year strategy for each category family. For more information please contact us.
More information

  • We spend around £7 billion each year on works, services or products
  • 50% of our total expenditure is with our top 20 suppliers
  • We have 11,000 listed suppliers, of which 4,000 were engaged in the last financial year

See our code of practice for prospective business dealings with customers and suppliers.
Workbank planning (tender schedule)
Innovation and suggestions scheme
Reclassification of Network Rail as a public sector body
Network Rail was reclassified as a public sector body on 1 September 2014. Find out about the impact on procurement and our suppliers:
Reclassification as a public sector body
Tender opportunities
Working with you to create and innovate
We recognise the importance of visibility of demand to our supply chain as this provides us with:

  • The basis on which to plan our business and support the planning of our own supply chains
  • The ability to recruit, train, develop and retain staff with the skills necessary to support our demands
  • The ability to support investment decisions in plant and equipment and promote innovation

The Government’s National Infrastructure Plan 2011 included the objective “to create better visibility and continuity of the infrastructure investment pipeline” to support the goal of economic growth.
To achieve this, we’re giving supply markets a clear picture of our infrastructure investment plans by publishing contract opportunities more frequently and in a consistent format.
The schedules below set out the current bidding opportunities. These are intended to be of use for both direct suppliers and at other levels of the supply chain.
Upcoming tenders
Our schedules are updated every four weeks:
Integrated work schedule Thameslink project tenders
The following schedule includes tenders for our National Supply Chain such as:

  • Infrastructure materials (rail, sleepers, ballast, switches and crossings)
  • Heavy on-track plant (stoneblowers, rail grinders, rail delivery and engineering trains)
  • Collection, road haulage and safe disposal services

Tender opportunities (2 MB Excel)
Invitation to tender and contract award scorecard
We have temporarily withdrawn the procurement KPI report whilst we develop and refresh the data that is used to produce it. This will ensure that it is more aligned with the Integrated Work Schedule and will allow us to forecast more accurately. We hope to publish it in the New Year.
Transport for London: London Underground opportunities.
We’re working with Transport for London – London Underground to provide greater visibility of our respective tendering opportunities and workbank planning to our supply chains.
Transport for London’s London Underground contract opportunities
Our supply chain strategy
The supply chain strategy outlines how we will collaborate and engage our supply chain to deliver the volumes of work required for CP5 (2014-19).
It also provides high level information on the contracting strategies for national, regional and major programme work banks.
Our supply chain strategy
If you have any questions, please contact the individuals listed againt the specific tender within the schedules.
Further information
Thameslink project information
© Network Rail Contact us Site map

Innovation and suggestions scheme
Smart ideas delivering value
We’re looking for innovative ideas to help us to deliver ever-improving value for our customers, passengers and stakeholders.
Someone, somewhere, already has the answer; by engaging with our suppliers and academic partners, we can develop new solutions for our mutual benefit.
If you can help us to solve one of our challenges, deliver our technical strategy or if you have a novel product or service offering that could make a big difference to installing, operating and maintaining rail infrastructure, please come and meet us at the next Unlocking Innovation scheme event organised by the Railway Industry Association.

For more information about how we handle suggestions including confidentiality and procurement concerns, please read our innovations and suggestions scheme FAQ (PDF).
To help ensure that we have a positive conversation, please review and ideally complete our innovation suggestions template (PDF). We use this to develop and evaluate ideas.
We’re looking for new ways of gathering and using asset condition and capability information to plan maintenance, prevent incidents and optimise whole-life cost. Measuring, monitoring and managing infrastructure challenges.
We want to change what we use to make and maintain infrastructure to improve reliability and longevity. From sleepers to signals, electrification to earthworks. Novel materials and components challenges.
We’re looking for new equipment, techniques and processes to help us carry out engineering works safely, quickly, efficiently and with minimal disruption. Process, people and plant challenges.
Help us find new ways to deliver train paths and signalling, and  run our signalling systems, level crossings and key stations safely for our customers. Operating the railway challenges.
Here is its supplier charter Freight opportunities.
We are keen to develop the rail freight market in the UK and provide help and support for your business.
Eddie Stobart freight train delivering for Tesco.
Are you considering transporting your goods by rail? Maybe you are considering setting up your own rail freight operation and need a site for a depot, or perhaps you are an existing operator and looking for opportunities to expand. We can help with these or any other rail freight related enquiries.
For more information or to arrange an informal meeting to discuss your requirements, please contact your regional Senior Route Freight Manager.
Growth of rail freight in the UK
Growing concerns about the environment and the increasing need for freight transport over both long and short distances mean that UK rail freight is a buoyant market.
The national road network is so congested and fuel prices so high that the rail alternative is now being viewed in a fresh light. New markets for coal, intermodal and port traffic are being created across the country with many operators developing new niche markets.
Traditional bulk commodities form the majority of rail freight shipments with coal, construction materials, metals and industrial minerals comprising of over 50% of the market. You can find out more in our study titled The Value and Importance of Rail Freight.
Next steps

  • Visit the rail freight resource centre
  • Find out how to move your freight by rail
  • See current services on offer for moving freight by rail
  • Contact us
  • Read the Britain relies on rail freight – report
  • Find out how rail freight helps our environment

Network Rail supply chain charter
One team with one goal – delivering sustainable best value
In order to provide a safe, reliable, efficient and sustainable railway fit for the 21st century, our ambition is to establish a world class supply chain that builds long term mutually beneficial relationships and encourages joint strategic development – in a fair, transparent and consistent way.
We will:
◦provide a safe and healthy working environment for all

  • deliver quality work to the agreed time and cost
  • abide by the RIA Value Improvement Programme Code of Practice
  • train our people to the appropriate level
  • learn from our mistakes and resolve issues together – without blame
  • continuously improve and develop
  • not tolerate continued poor performance


Working together we will:

  • jointly develop and deliver whole-life best value solutions
  • support and collaborate with each other
  • value and harness the diversity of our people
  • communicate on time, in a concise, clear and open way
  • share ideas, plans and information
  • identify, inform and manage risks together
  • recognise that everyone’s contribution matters
  • avoid duplication and waste

We will take pride in what we do:

  • innovate and delight customers
  • take ownership and responsibility for what we do
  • display high ethical standards in our actions
  • promote and celebrate success
  • make the rail industry a desirable place to work


Showing respect means we will:

  • respect the environment, communities and the people we work with
  • always treat each other honestly, with openness and courtesy
  • pay on time for work delivered
  • adhere to mutually agreed terms
  • treat all information received as confidential

Product acceptance  product acceptance?

The product acceptance process gives us the assurance that products accepted for use on or about our infrastructure are:

  • Safe
  • Fit for purpose
  • Do not export unacceptable risks to Network Rail infrastructure.

Only accepted products – except those allowed by NR/L2/RSE/100/05 – shall be used on the rail infrastructure.

Do I need to apply for acceptance?
Network Rail standard NR/L2/RSE/100/05, Product introduction and change, governs the process for the acceptance of products. This includes:

  • New or modified products, materials, equipment, and systems
  • Changes of application
  • Road rail vehicles or attachments, and rail mounted machines, on-track machines, road plant and portable and transportable work equipment that could affect or interact with the infrastructure.

Please refer to NR/L2/RSE/100/06, How to decide what needs product acceptance, for details on the products that this process applies to.

See Accessing Network Rail standards for contractors and suppliers for information on standards.

How to find an approved product
The catalogue of accepted products is available on the PADSnet website.

PADS (Parts and Drawings System) data is managed by Network Rail. This includes the creation and revision of PADS numbers.

There are more than 85,000 products accepted for use on our infrastructure.

How to apply for product acceptance

To apply, complete our online application form:

  • Apply for product acceptance

You will need to provide justification by demonstrating monetary, safety and / or performance benefits to Network Rail.

Acceptance is subject to standard terms and conditions which are available in the sample Certificate of Acceptance (PDF).

Please download and read our guide to product acceptance.
Guide to product acceptance (225 KB)

Supplier quality assurance
Suppliers and manufacturers of controlled products are required to engage in our supplier quality assurance process.

Coming soon your dedicated guide to supply chain business opportunities

Strengthening Supply ChainsStrengthening Supply Chains – November 2014 – Download PDF

Today's News