Frequently Asked Questions

What is MOD Defence Contracts Online (MOD DCO)?

MOD DCO is the official source of UK MOD contracts – giving you instant access to all of its contract opportunities, over £10,000, in one place. Access to DCO is completely free, and registered suppliers can search for opportunities 24/7 and receive a daily email alert notifying you of opportunities matching your company’s business activity. Click here to get started.

Where can I learn more about the DCO application?

Every month we run free webinars that demonstrate what the application can do to help you find MOD tenders. You can register for our webinars here

What is the MOD DCO Daily Email Alert?

The MOD DCO Daily Email Alert delivers UK MOD contract opportunities matching your organisation’s unique profile, by email, every working day. This service allows you to create your unique profile describing the products or services which your company offers, using keywords and codes. You receive only those contract notices that match your requirements

What value of contract opportunities are advertised on the MOD DCO website?

MOD DCO contains UK MOD contract opportunities of all values, making it the only official single source of such information.

MOD acquisition teams are required to advertise through MOD DCO their ‘warlike’ and ‘non-warlike’ requirements for goods, services or works valued at above £10,000 except where exemptions apply.

What is the cost of an annual subscription to MOD DCO?

The MOD DCO service is provided free of charge. Once registered you will be able to search for UK MOD contract opportunities online 24/7, and receive a daily email alert detailing opportunities matching your company’s areas of interest.

How can I carry out additional searches on MOD DCO?

MOD DCO offers you the ability to run a Quick Search or an Advanced Search to search for contract opportunities posted on the service. By entering a time period, industry sector and keywords you can search MOD DCO for matching contract opportunities.

What information is required to build my MOD DCO Daily Email Alert profile?

Your MOD DCO Daily Email Alert profile is driven by keywords or phrases (eg ‘defence’ or ‘information security’) and CPV (Common Procurement Vocabulary) codes. At registration you will be asked to enter three or four keywords, and you can expand on this once you are logged in.

What are CPV codes and how do I use them?

CPV codes have been specially developed by the EU for public sector procurement. Buyers use CPV codes to classify their contracts by applying a code and description for the items they wish to procure. Suppliers can add CPV codes to their supplier profile to assist in the matching of contract opportunities. To assist you we have provided an easy online search where you can type in a word or word stem (eg ‘defence’ or ‘def’) which will return matching CPV codes. By clicking the boxes next to the CPV codes you can include them in your profile or use them for online searching.

Can I use exact keywords, abbreviations, acronyms, company names, etc?

You can use MOD DCO to search for abbreviations, acronyms and company names as well as exact keywords in the advanced contract search. This section is also case-sensitive. These words cannot be left open-ended, as MOD DCO will only search for exact matches. If you were to insert the word ” it would exactly match the word arm and not find contracts which contain words such as ‘armoured’, ‘vehicle armour’, and ‘body armour’.

NB: Please ensure your selection is as specific as possible. It is not advisable to use words such as ‘service’, ‘information’, ‘journal’, ‘maintenance’, etc. These words are generic and will provide you with irrelevant information. Exact keywords which are contained within your profile will be highlighted in your results.

Can I monitor my competition?

You can enter your competitors’ names in the Exact Keywords section of the Advanced Search form on MOD DCO. Please remember to include any abbreviations. By inserting a company name you will be notified of contracts that have been awarded to that competitor.

Can I set my profile so that some types of contract are not supplied?

Yes, MOD DCO filters out contracts which are not relevant, and allows you to input keywords, enabling you to spend more time concentrating on the contract opportunities which are going to win you new business. For example, you may work in the construction industry and have the keyword ‘construction’ contained within your profile, but you may not deal with the construction of roads. By including ‘roads’ in the Omit Keywords section, you will only receive contracts related to construction that do not contain the keyword ‘roads’.

Can I set my profile so that I receive all notices from specific organisations?

Yes, with MOD DCO you can elect to receive not only notices of specific supplies, services and works but also notices from specific organisations. You can even ask MOD DCO to notify you of contracts that have been awarded to your competitors, thereby benefiting from a unique market intelligence service.

How do I update/amend my MOD DCO Daily Email Alert profile?

You can update/amend your MOD DCO Daily Email Alert profile by accessing the MOD DCO website and from the Activity Centre choosing to update your Daily Email Alert profile.

What if I lose my password?

If you lose your password you can choose the ‘forgotten password’ link located on the MOD DCO home page. Your log-in details will be emailed to you.

What statistics are provided by MOD DCO?

To ensure that your profile is working for your organisation, use the statistics which are contained at the bottom of every email that is dispatched to you. They will show you how often keywords or CPV codes are included in the contracts delivered to you.

Does MOD DCO search both contract notices and awards?

When compiling your personal profile you have the option to search for new contract notices and/or contract awards. By selecting contract awards you will be able to identify sub-contract opportunities and monitor the activities of your competitors. To receive both contract notices and contract awards indicate ‘Search Both’ on your profile. If you choose to receive both contract notices and contract awards, these will be divided into categories in your results.

How often is MOD DCO updated?

MOD DCO is updated every working day.

Is support available to answer my questions regarding MOD DCO?

Yes, support is available through a variety of channels. Contract opportunities may raise queries as they contain so much information, so we have provided online user guides as well as integrated help functions. If, however, you still have any unanswered questions, we provide a complete support service. Please use the Contact Us form to submit your query.

What are the different types of notice I can search for?

Competitive Contract Notice

Contract opportunities that are typically worth under £101,323 will be categorised as Competitive Contract Notices and will be classified by the ‘Nature of the Contract’ of which there are four categories: Works, Services, Supplies or Research (scientific).

Competitive Contract Notice will state the requirements of the opportunity.
ompetitive Contract Addendum will highlight any changes or amendments or provide notification of cancellation of a published Competitive Contract Notice.
Competitive Contract Notice Award will publish details of the company or companies which have been awarded the contract opportunity.
Possible Future Purchase

Possible Future Purchase notices provide companies with advance warning of forthcoming MOD tenders or contracts.

Should a purchase be decided, full documentation for the requirement will be available in due course and an announcement will appear in the usual way. Companies are invited to note the summaries of the requirements given and to register their interest, if appropriate, with the specified MOD issuing branch, quoting the project requirement title before the deadline for ‘Expressions of Interest’.

The announcement of a future requirement is not to be construed as confirmation that a tender or contract will subsequently be issued. Announcements are for information only.

Tenders Invited

This section identifies those organisations which have been invited to tender for Possible Future Purchases. The purpose of this section is to enable prospective sub-contractors and peripheral or sub-suppliers to contact tenderers directly in order to offer their services or products.


Amendments to contracts made after their original publication are included in this section.

Contracts Awarded

The Contracts Awarded section provides notification of the award of a contract. The purpose is both to inform interested parties of the successful tenderer and to again enable prospective sub-contractors and peripheral or sub-suppliers who may have missed the Tenders Invited notice to contact the successful tenderer directly to offer their services or products.

Sub-Contract Opportunities

Sub-Contract Opportunities notices provide details of the MOD’s prime contractors’ requirements for possible sub-contract opportunities. The sub-contract opportunity will have arisen as part of an MOD prime contract. The purpose is to alert possible sub-contractors to potential opportunities to bid for MOD work as a second tier defence supplier. Prospective suppliers should contact the relevant prime contractor issuing branch/point of contact to register their interest in bidding for the requirement. If the Sub-Contract Opportunity notice provides details of companies that have been issued tenders as possible second tier suppliers, third tier suppliers should contact those companies invited to tender directly.

Existing Contracts

Existing Contracts for Specialist Term Commissions, Prime Contracts and Infrastructure Support Provider (ISP). Provides details of existing Enabling Arrangements for the defence estate, which gives specialist contractors the opportunity to offer their services direct to the contractors listed within this section.

What are the different procedure types?

Procedure Types

Open procedure: A procedure where suppliers can apply without prior selection. The EU Directives lay down the type of criteria which can be used to eliminate unqualified or unsuitable suppliers.
Restricted procedure: A procedure where suppliers are selected by an open first-round invitation. All prospective suppliers can apply to be included in the restricted list for the contract. Those suppliers who meet the required criteria will then be invited to tender.
Negotiated procedure: A procedure where only chosen suppliers are invited to negotiate contracts. May be used in limited circumstances only – eg extreme urgency, failure of open or restricted procedures to yield valid tenders, or repetition of similar work.
Accelerated restricted or negotiated procedure: A procedure where the length of time of the procurement response process may be shortened to accommodate unforeseen circumstances and/or emergency situations.

How do I cancel my access to MOD DCO?

Should you no longer wish to have access to MOD DCO, please use the Contact Us form to notify us. We would also appreciate if you could include your reasons for wishing to cancel.

Any other queries?

If you have any unanswered questions, please use the Contact Us form.
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT The Ministry of Defence is pleased to announce that the Defence Sourcing Portal is now live at This is the new official one-stop-shop for contract opportunities, tendering and information on doing business with the Ministry of Defence. All new contract opportunities will be advertised and tendered on this platform. Please note that MOD opportunities advertised prior to the 15th February 2021 will still be processed to conclusion on this portal, Defence Contracts Online.