Skip to main content

Spend Comparison Service

The Spend Comparison Service provides benchmarking and spend analytics on data from across all of NHS England’s providers including acute, ambulance, mental health and community trusts.

The service is comprised of 3 data collections:

The data gathered from the collections will be processed and displayed via analytics dashboards. The data is available to a variety of NHS procurement, finance and clinical users.

The analytical information will more effectively enable NHS Improvement to help providers reduce cost and improve the quality of their services.

The Spend Comparison Service will:

  • help providers across Integrated care systems to reduce price variation and identify area for collaboration
  • help address product variation in clinical specialities and improve the quality of their services
  • help providers maximise their use of resources and become more efficient as required by the provider licence
  • support an approach to benchmarking for regulatory purposes
  • inform strategic programmes led by Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT), NHS England & Improvement and NHS Supply Chain
  • inform NHS national aggregation initiatives such as Nationally Contracted Products

Introduction to Spend Comparison

The NHS Spend Comparison Service (SCS) was commissioned by NHS Improvement and is provided by NHS Digital on behalf of providers. It provides users with price benchmarking and spend analysis of procurement data for all NHS trusts within NHS England.

All NHS trusts (acute, specialists, mental health, community and ambulance) are required to upload their purchase order and accounts payable data each to NHS Digital Strategic Data Collections Service (SDCS). Purchase Order data is collected on a weekly basis and Account Payable data is collected monthly.

The raw trust data is then aggregated and cleansed by NHS Digital, and this aggregate database then forms the foundation of the different visualisations and analysis found within the SCS analytics dashboards.

The service enables users to view the underlying data within several different formats, allowing for different methods of analysis, including benchmarking prices paid for goods and services, identifying alternative suppliers and products that may offer better value, as well as identifying inflation, possible sources of alternative stock, and insight into and trends within supply markets. Since its launch, providers have consistently evidenced real life cost savings from the use of SCS. Also included within the service is the GIRFT clinical classification that allows providers to analyse their procurement data by medical and surgical specialty, procedure, and product classification.

Training and guidance

The NHS Spend Comparison user guide serves as a user guide for the PO analytics dashboards. It offers an overview of how to gain access to the service, provides an understanding of how to navigate around the product, some examples of how to use the service to gain specific insights, and some useful tips.  

In addition to the user guide, there are a range of short videos available for NHS SCS end users which can be accessed via the Procurement Target Operating Model (PTOM) Hub pages on Future NHS. For access to these pages or if you require additional training, please get in touch with the PTOM Programme team at NHS England & Improvement by e-mailing

Details of arranged training events will appear here, when available to book.

If you have any specific queries about how to use the system, please log those with our National Service Desk at

For data submission guidance go to the Strategic Data Collection Service

The use of the Spend Comparison Service is governed by the terms and conditions highlighted in the End User Access Agreement (EUAA).

Contact us

For further information or support please contact our NHS National Service Desk.


Telephone: 0300 303 5035

Last edited: 28 September 2021 1:11 pm