A description of the subject matter of the contract – the technical specification – can either be formulated as performance or functional requirements or formulated with reference to various standards. When they are not formulated as performance or functional requirements, the technical specifications should be formulated as accurately and precisely as possible. This often makes the procurement process easier and provides greater clarity and an increased understanding of the technical requirements.
The technical specifications may not normally refer to a particular trademark or origin. However, this may be done if the contracting authority cannot describe the subject matter of the contract with sufficient precision and unambiguously without such a reference, provided that this is supplemented by adding the words ‘or equivalent’.
There are provisions for how to formulate a technical specification in the contract documents and in certain cases it is mandatory for procurements above the thresholds, including procurements of B Services, to refer to a standard in a procurement. Contracting authorities are therefore liable to keep themselves informed about any standards in the area in question. Standards have been drawn up for works, supply and service contracts. The Swedish Standards Institute (SIS) can provide a certain amount of guidance (www.sis.se).