Any organization that provides a service for a licensee under a legally binding contract that is not in the licensee’s direct employment or formally seconded to the licensee from the licensee’s parent company
Supplier or contractor means any organisation or individual person that provides a service for a licensee under a legally binding contract that is not in the licensee’s direct employment or formally seconded to the licensee from the licensee’s parent company. This definition also includes divisions or functions of the parent company organisation appointed by the licensee organisation to provide specific services e.g. Architect Engineer or Responsible Designer services. The definition excludes individual contractors or members of contractor organisations which the licensee is able to demonstrate as being fully embedded in the licensee organisation to the point that they can be regarded as employees for health and safety law purposes, and ‘secondees’ from a parent company or parent body organisation. 
Vendors and suppliers create a great deal of the knowledge developed for the organization, particularly in the design area. Many nuclear organizations outsource or contract the development of design and changes to operating facilities. The means to transfer this knowledge to the nuclear organization must be controlled by procedure, contract requirements and deployment of technology to support such transfers, in a way that the knoweldge may be reviewed, verified and integrated with nuclear organization knowledge.
 Office for Nuclear Regulation, Licensee Core and Intelligent Customer Capabilities, http://www.onr.org.uk/operational/tech_asst_guides/ns-tast-gd-049.pdf