This is an updated post based on highlights from the interview with Rosalyn Ingram, Director of State Purchasing & Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) for the State of Florida Division of Purchasing. Read this blog to learn more about Roz’s role as the Florida CPO and get to know her fun and people-loving personality.
Roz has a B.S. degree in Business from Florida State University. She is also a Project Management Professional, Certified Public Manager, and Florida Certified Negotiator. She has 30 years of state government experience and has worked in several agencies to gain her diverse knowledge of state government and best practices in procurement. The Division of State Purchasing, led by Roz, creates state term contracts that leverages all state agency spend, as well as spend created through cities and counties that are able to use them. Her division also provides training for Certified Contract Managers, Certified Negotiators, and Project Management Professionals. They are also charged with rule promulgation and policy initiatives. She also manages the MyFloridaMarketPlace (MFMP) eProcurement system.
NASPO STAFF: Roz, last time we spoke you had just been re-elected to serve a second term on the NASPO Board of Directors. You are one of the many energetic CPOs and dedicated NASPO Board of Directors member. Why do you value your membership with NASPO?
ROZ INGRAM: Thank you! It’s been an honor and I look forward to continuing to serve the NASPO membership! NASPO provides such a unique collaborative experience that cannot be replicated anywhere else. That value cannot be overstated. Although there are many places to go to get information, this association puts you together with people with not just similar – but the EXACT – challenges your state is experiencing. I learn something new from every interaction.
NASPO STAFF: In the words of a recent NASPO conference participant “If I could clone Roz’s brain, that would be amazing”. You seem to have quite a few followers in the NASPO community. Tell me about your involvement with NASPO and what motivates you to be a part of this nationwide organization of great state procurement professionals such as yourself?
ROZ INGRAM: Yikes! Being inside my head is a scary prospect! I was embraced fully by this organization as soon as I was appointed CPO. It took me a few months to begin to see the breadth of reach you can attain with these folks. When I first volunteered on a project, I wasn’t sure what to expect. That first one was amazing and I have tried to be more involved since that time. I have thoroughly enjoyed my opportunity on the board as we move forward to even more challenges ahead.
NASPO STAFF: If I were a fly on the wall in Roz’s office in Tallahassee, Florida, what would I hear and see every day? Walk me through a day in the life as the CPO of the Division of Purchasing.
ROZ INGRAM: Another frightening place to be on any given day! Above most everything else, I try to have fun every day while doing the people’s work. At our core we are servant leaders and I think that to be the best at our craft we should believe that we work together as a unit. Many days are uneventful as far as anyone from the outside can see, but as we all know, there are pitfalls in every step of a procurement. I like the mental picture of the duck calm above the water, but furiously paddling underneath.
Other days are a bit more exciting. There could be interviews, calls with the Governor’s office, rule promulgation, and my fave – protests! I have the best staff that a person could have so any success that occurs in Florida rests fully on them! They are awesome!
NASPO STAFF: Florida is one of the early implementers of the complete source-to-pay eProcurement solution for vendors and agency customers. I know you’ve had many successes since the deployment in 2003. One of the major hurdles states face when implementing eProcurement solutions is limited utilization. Can you talk about how mandating it statewide helped increase utilization, standardization and customer satisfaction?
ROZ INGRAM: Agencies benefit from increased control and management of contracts, reduced cycle time for orders and payments, improved training offerings with increased opportunities, and increased competition from the vendor community. Vendors benefit from the agencies’ use of standardized documents and procedures regarding the source to pay process and improved training offerings with increased opportunities. We measure utilization monthly and send reports to agency executive leadership to ensure consistent utilization. We measure customer satisfaction every year and the MFMP Program has achieved an increase in customer satisfaction ratings, year after year. Last year MFMP customer satisfaction exceeded 96 percent statewide, our highest rating in program history.
NASPO STAFF: Name one accomplishment you are most proud of since you became the CPO in Florida.
ROZ INGRAM: I think I’d have to say that there are two I feel equally proud about. One is our collaboration over the last three years with the IT vendor community. The events we have held to dispel rumor from right – along with intent – has been a great experience for us. We feel much stronger as we move forward in this intensely fluid arena.
The second and most surprising for me is our rule promulgation. We have updated or repealed most of our rules. At the onset, I had no idea of the steps and time this took. I am very proud that we are almost through!
NASPO STAFF: Any words of wisdom, things you’d like to share with our Procurement Pulse blog community and procurement professionals around the country?
ROZ INGRAM: Yes! Develop relationships with other members of NASPO! One, they are all superstars, and, two, you can easily reduce your resources by adopting what another state has tackled and finished. This group loves to share! Another valuable morsel – get involved! You will really enjoy serving on committees and helping to further the profession we’ve all chosen.
NASPO STAFF: What keeps you up at night?
ROZ INGRAM: Arranging major to minor challenges that may be coming at me the next day, but most often I worry about my two beautiful grandchildren and their health and happiness.
NASPO STAFF: What is on your white board in your office right now?
ROZ INGRAM: That’s a great question! I have two. One is professional and the other personal. I just erased the professional one that outlined our IT cost by chair/use/program. I typically have someone’s child write on my other one and leave it up for them to see again when they come up. The most recent was my granddaughter’s scribbling (she’s 2).
NASPO STAFF: What is your favorite NASPO resource and why?
ROZ INGRAM: Honestly, I know that many would go right to the program/member options, but my favorite – by a long shot – is the staff. I have figured out who does what in the new org chart and contact them often for information. Of course, I also love Procurement U, the blogs, and all members call for information. We can learn so much from the posts!
NASPO STAFF: What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
ROZ INGRAM: We love our boat and motor coach and try and combine them, our family, and the gaggle of dogs whenever possible. For stress relief, I mow the grass and paint my walls. I know – sad, BUT they provide immediate gratification!
NASPO STAFF: What is your greatest personal achievement?
ROZ INGRAM: Bringing four individuals to adulthood in a difficult world and having the good sense to marry my husband Robert who is the most aggravating and wonderful man – as well as my best friend.
NASPO STAFF: If you didn’t work in public procurement, what would you do?
ROZ INGRAM: Career-wise, I would love to get back into event planning. I did that for a couple of years and really enjoyed the fast pace of it and the feeling of accomplishment when an event was successfully completed. If I won the lottery/etc. – we would run a dog rescue. We love dogs of all types and would like to see them with families.
NASPO STAFF: If you had an office mascot, what would it be?
ROZ INGRAM: It would probably be a mix between a pit bull and a golden retriever…I’ll let you figure that one out! 😊