Canadian Government to Pilot QBS

46 Years after the US federal government made it law, the Canadian government has decided to pilot QBS procurement for engineering and architecture services. Read the ACEC press release below…

Federal Government Plans QBS Pilot – Seeks Industry Input

Office of the President & CEO
Association of Consulting Engineering Companies | Canada
130 Albert St. Suite 420
Ottawa, ON K1P 5G4

February 7, 2018

Your participation is critical to success!

An important consultation is being conducted in preparation of a trial use of Qualifications Based Selection (QBS) for the procurement of engineers and architects by Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC). The Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – Canada (ACEC) encourages its members and partners to participate in this consultation through the Request for Information- Qualification Based Selection Model and Social Procurement (EP765-182598/A) issued by PSPC. A strong supportive message from the ACEC membership and industry partners is critical to a successful QBS pilot and subsequent adoption by PSPC.

Responses to Request for Information are requested by March 13, 2018.

ACEC applauds the PSPC leadership for its openness to QBS and its willingness to work with the engineering and architecture sectors. ACEC along with the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada (RAIC) and other stakeholders have been working with PSPC for the last few months to familiarize key leaders within the federal government on the many benefits of QBS. As a result, PSPC has committed to conducting a pilot of QBS procurement for engineering and architecture services to evaluate its effectiveness in achieving better outcomes, more innovation and life-cycle savings. However, success will depend on the ACEC membership and other industry players demonstrating its strong support for QBS.

PSPC’s plans to pilot QBS and its openness to adopting QBS represent a major breakthrough after years of effort by ACEC and its provincial and territorial Member Organizations across Canada. This was a team effort and ACEC would also like to thank Toon Dreesen of the RAIC/Ontario Association of Architects, Cal Harrison of QBS Canada and Mark Steiner of the American Council of Engineering Companies for their important roles in achieving this important QBS milestone. ACEC also thanks Assistant Deputy Minister Arianne Reza and her team at PSPC.

About Qualifications Based Selection (QBS)

In accordance with the InfraGuide best-practices document titled Selecting a Professional Consultant, developed by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities in 2006, QBS is a competitive process for the procurement of professional consulting services based on professional qualifications. Qualifications are submitted to an owner, who evaluates and selects the best-qualified firm or individual(s) for the proposed design, based on technical qualifications. The selected firm and the owner then jointly refine the final scope of work for the procurement. The consultant’s fee is then negotiated based on the agreed-upon scope of work and the consultant’s submitted rate schedule.

Click here to access the Request of Information and to participate in the QBS consultation:

Request for Information- Qualification Based Selection Model and Social Procurement (EP765-182598/A)

Thank you in advance for your support. Working together we can make QBS a reality across Canada!


John D. Gamble, CET, P.Eng.

President & CEO

Association of Consulting Engineering Companies | Canada

Tel: 613-236-0569

ACEC, the voice of consulting engineering in Canada, advocates for a business and regulatory climate that allows its members to provide a high level of service and value to their clients. For information on ACEC’s advocacy on behalf of its members, visit



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