Documenting Processes and Procedures: Not Just for Litigation Anymore!
“If you don’t write it down, it didn’t happen.” How many of us have heard this before – most likely from a lawyer?
Read more “Documenting Processes and Procedures: Not Just for Litigation Anymore!”
Another Resource for your Procurement Toolbox: PTAC
Like most problem-solvers, procurement professionals have a metaphorical toolbox that they reach into from time to time to assist in acquiring best value. In this article, we discuss one of the tools in the public procurement toolbox, the Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC). In case you haven’t utilized this tool before, let’s get you familiar with it! A guiding principle of public procurement is the maximization of competition. PTACs help to increase bid participation by working one-on-one with small businesses and assisting them in competing for government contracts.
Read more “Another Resource for your Procurement Toolbox: PTAC”
Which States Have Preference Policies? NASPO Has the Repository!
Giving preference to local bidders is a common means of making government contracts more accessible to resident small business enterprises and supporting local economies.
There are different types of preferences and the policy application around the country varies greatly; this adds complexity for both governmental and business entities trying to understand the preference conditions in each state. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a nationwide resource, a central place with state-by-state information on local preferences and reciprocity laws? Look no further! NASPO just launched the State Preference Repository, a comprehensive database, including preference conditions and law citations for all 50 states and the District of Columbia to help agencies determine the lowest responsible bidder.
Read more “Which States Have Preference Policies? NASPO Has the Repository!”
Build Today for a Better Tomorrow
NASPO’s Higher Education initiatives are built upon our relationships with academic partners. After more than three years of working with these impressive academics and their students, the answer to a need of our membership often lies with one of our partner schools. NASPO encourages its membership to participate in academic partner career fairs, case competitions and many other events, but the ultimate goal is to build an example for the states to model when reaching out to their local institutions. NASPO has worked to establish relationships with top-tier Supply Chain Management programs across the country. Of course, the primary goal in everything we do is to serve our members, and these partnerships are no different.
Proactive Contract Management for the Modern Procurement Professional
This article is a proponent of NASPO Best Practices: Ethics and Accountability white paper and aims to augment research in proactive ethical practices through accountability, transparency, and conflict of interest. NASPO strives to emit leadership, excellence and, integrity while elevating the profession of public procurement through best practices. As stewards of taxpayers’ money, it is imperative that procurement staff not only choose the right path when dealing with an ethical dilemma but the ‘best’ path, in order to remain beyond reproach in the public eye.
Read more “Proactive Contract Management for the Modern Procurement Professional”
NASPO’s Contract Administration Workshop
Training and professional development are essential to the state procurement office. Many procurement offices deliver internal training to their staff on a regular basis. The topics of these offerings can be everything from how to conduct an RFP evaluation to how to use the office P-card. Whether an office has a formalized training program resulting in a certification or less formal “hot topic” training, the intent is the same: to improve the procurement process.
In addition to providing internal training, many procurement offices are tasked with delivering training to the agency staff responsible for contract administration. These agency staff may not have a procurement or contract management background but are tasked with the administration of contracts related to their job duties. However, there is a great deal of responsibility delegated to the agency contract administrators, as they are interacting with the contracted supplier most often. Ineffective contract administration can affect the overall success of the contract.
Through the Vendor’s Eyes: Procurement and Contract Management
NASPO recently held the REACH (Regional Education and Connection Hub) Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana. 270 state members representing 47 states and the District of Columbia came together to participate in the first “super regional” conference in NASPO’s history, bringing together the Southern, Eastern, Midwestern, and Western Regions. The event was filled with educational and professional growth opportunities that expanded NASPO members’ support network into all four regions. In this series of blogs, NASPO staff will share key takeaways and highlights from REACH’s expansive programs agenda.
“How many people have experienced frustration with a vendor?” Valerie Bollinger, State Purchasing Manager for the State of Idaho asked participants at a recent NASPO REACH conference. The room quickly filled with laughter as many state procurement professionals attending the breakout session titled Procurement and Contract Management Through the Vendor’s Eyes realized they can relate. Public procurement professionals and vendors alike are occasionally frustrated with each other and feel like it’s “them vs. us” when doing business together. The group exercise, led by Valerie, was an introspection and challenge to participants to put themselves in the vendor’s shoes and think through solutions that could inform better processes and relationships during the contract management phase, which is an important piece of the complex state procurement process.
Read more “Through the Vendor’s Eyes: Procurement and Contract Management”