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The 5 Minute RFP

The 5 Minute RFP

It seems that there is never enough time in the day for everything a purchasing team needs to accomplish. From understanding department purchasing needs to negotiating contracts, and the entire purchasing process in between, it is no wonder that so many within the procurement field feel challenged for time. Procurement and purchasing professionals’ roles are also ever-changing, with new initiatives and policy updates to integrate and adapt to. Saving time within the busy day allows purchasing professionals to focus on strategic initiatives that many buying organizations are starting to implement. Within the public sector, the role of the purchasing professional has changed over the past few years. Especially today, there is a significant need to save time and find ways to keep up with the evolving purchasing department role.

E-procurement systems, such as online bid & supplier management systems, automate many of the manual processes within a purchasing department. Solicitation and the distribution of related documents now takes only seconds, and the online creation and preparation of an entire RFP and all related documents can take fewer than five minutes.

Saving time distributing RFPs & documents

Public purchasing departments are saving time distributing RFPs, RFQs, addendum and corresponding documents with e-procurement and e-purchasing systems. E-purchasing systems streamline the purchasing process, creating more automated processes and ultimately saving the buying organization time. The SourceSuite e-procurement solution is helping its government users save time with its robust bid and vendor management solutions.  "I remember getting on the copier and making 20 copies of a bid, putting it in envelopes, tracking right addresses, and putting tons of postage on everything to distribute, as well as standing at the fax machine for an entire afternoon faxing addenda and verifying receipts,” remembers Tammy Brisco West, Purchasing Director of Chaves County, NM of a time before the county utilized the SourceSuite bid system. “Now the process takes me less than five minutes to distribute a bid, and about a minute to post an addendum, no postage necessary.  The distribution is so simple,” she continued. Counties, municipal governments and special districts from around the country are realizing the time savings associated with using SourceSuite for bid management and distribution.

What 5 minutes means to local government buyers

Local government purchasing departments have had to do more with less over the past decade, even as more projects and strategic initiatives are placed in their hands. Finding a solution that reduces the manual processes of distributing an RFP - that in the past took hours - to just 5 minutes was a life-saver for many departments. "My time has not been cut in half- it’s been cut into tiny pieces. The Purchasing System has saved us a tremendous amount of time," Brisco West continued speaking of Chaves County’s time saved using the New Mexico Purchasing Group, a SourceSuite regional bid system of 22 local government agencies within New Mexico.

Randy Barker, the Internal Services Manager of Hutto, Texas agrees with Brisco West and other purchasing professionals who have saved time using an e-procurement system. "I can actually go through the Purchasing System, post the solicitation, then send out to vendors in much less time than I can do through my own website. It’s a blessing for us. The whole process takes less than five minutes," reiterated Barker. The City of Hutto, Texas has used SourceSuite’s Texas Purchasing Group since 2011.

SourceSuite customers from across the country agree that a 5 minute or less RFP & bid process is one of the many solutions that the e-purchasing system provides their buyers and purchasing team. “The [Bid] System has helped us streamline the bidding process and reduce costs in several ways,” stated Mary Miller, Buyer at Monroe Community College in New York. Miller explains, “By posting our bids and quotes online we have significantly reduced copying and postage expenses. Not only has this freed up personnel [time], allowing them to devote more time to high profile projects- the system’s vast vendor database has helped us reduce costs by increasing the competitive scope of each bid or RFP.”

About SourceSuite’s 5 minute RFP process

SourceSuite is a robust bid and supplier management solution built with the purchasing professional in mind. One of the most useful features according to SourceSuite public sector buying organization users is the RFP & Bid Notice creation & distribution. SourceSuite accommodates the needs of purchasing professionals to instantly send bid opportunities to an online, secure database of suppliers. Solicitations and any corresponding documents are published and distributed electronically to all eligible suppliers. RFP and bid notifications can be sent to suppliers by qualification, location, standard classification codes, or on a per-item basis, allowing for maximum flexibility when publishing solicitations through SourceSuite. The quick and easy creation and distribution of solicitations on a SourceSuite e-purchasing system saves the purchasing team valuable time during the procurement process. Does your current process need an update? If your purchasing department is challenged for time, the 5 minute RFP creation and notification is your solution.

Kim Cullen | sourcesuite.com

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