Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 12

uncertainty about appropriate contacts
in client departments.

Open Enrollment
PSDS borrowed a principle of agile
software development; it built into the
RFP the ability to develop incremental
releases and provide multiple iterations.
The RFP would need to be flexible
to accommodate new industry and
new developments in the research
community. Therefore, the RFP was
structured to include iterations known
as "generations" and featured an open
annual enrollment period. This would
allow for modifications and the ability
to accommodate changing needs.
Clients would have the opportunity
to communicate expectations for
purchases with PSDS, sustain
competitive offerings from current
contract vendors, and identify new
R&D vendors with desirable potential
for contracting. Each iteration of the
RFP allows for review of the previous
terms and room to make adjustments. It
facilitates further user involvement, and
provides for the client frequent delivery
of relevant contracts. This method is
ideal for research because innovation
is always transitioning. Keeping up with
the industry was simply unachievable
through single RFPs. In addition, the
open enrollment allowed for strategy
discussions over what research would
be next and how PSDS could assist.

Vendor Proposal
Contracting Form
To streamline the proposal review
process and enable ease of award,
we created a "vendor proposal
contracting form" (VPCF) and added
it to the proposal requirements. The
VPCF served two main purposes: (1)
the main method for vendors to submit
proposals and (2) the vendor master
agreement with the University. With
issuance of the RFP, PSDS provided
the VPCF in Microsoft Word and Adobe
Fillable Form formats. Vendors would
complete the VPCF, which provided
only the necessary information to
determine if the vendor was eligible
for award and was in agreement our
terms and conditions. This significantly
streamlined the review and award

12

process, because each proposal was
presented in the same structured
document, and specific information
was located in the same place within
the document.
PSDS captured negotiations on an
attachment document, combined with
the original VPCF. This attachment,
combined with the original VPCF
document, became the master
agreement after award.
Further streamlining efforts included
requiring that vendors submit only
electronic proposals through an online
portal. It gathered initial information
that was later used to create a contract
summary page for the vendor, and it
facilitated creation of a webpage for
the vendor contract. This produced an
online presence for cooperative access
and provided information on sales
contacts and vendor pricing.

Implementation
During the RFP process, vendors
submitted information regarding offered
products and services, qualifications,
references, and warranties. A selection
committee comprising researchers
and administrators reviewed these
submissions. PSDS then contacted
vendors who met the pre-qualification
criteria to develop desirable contract
terms and conditions. PSDS wanted
to take these contracts a step further,
and with the help of the Virginia Higher
Education Procurement Consortium
(VHEPC), PSDS leveraged volume
across our university and other Virginia
institutions to negotiate best value
pricing and standard terms around
discounts, payments, shipping,
and installation. The RFP also had
the additional effect of increasing
opportunities for small, women-owned,
and minority-owned businesses.
By the end of October 2016, all 70
vendors who had submitted proposals
had been contacted for negotiation;
43 had been awarded contracts.
Management of this project involved
the PSDS director, one buyer, a
contracts administrator, a marketplace
ecommerce manager, a supplier
diversity representative, a procurement
analyst, an accounts payable vendorfile specialist, and the Virginia Higher

EDUCATIONAL PROCUREMENT JOURNAL | SUMMER 2018

Education Procurement
Consortium (VHEPC).

Soliciting Proposals
The bulk of the work involved
communicating the value of this RFP
to vendors and soliciting responses
from them. The RFP was posted
publically on both the PSDS website
and the Commonwealth of Virginia's
eProcurement Portal. In spite of
the posting, PSDS still needed
to inform vendors of the value of
contracting with the University.
Many vendors were not aware of the
administrative work regarding sole
source justifications and had become
accustomed to receiving orders under
that method. In addition, to many
vendors, the concept of cooperative
contracting was new. PSDS enlisted
the assistance of its director, Eric
Denby, who personally made phone
calls and sent emails. This approach
was met with moderate success, due
to limited available contact information
and because initial sales contacts
had little involvement with negotiating
and forming contracts. PSDS did
determine that the most value was
gained when the client engaged the
vendor directly and promoted the RFP
as a condition of purchase. PSDS
wants future iterations of the RFP to
be a combined effort promoted by the
client, as this method appears to have
the most impact. PSDS has provided
clients and vendors with a portal
through which they can communicate
the contact information of vendors
targeted for future generations of
the RFP.
PSDS also partnered with other
universities under VHEPC to add
vendors to the program. With the
added cooperation, PSDS met the
needs of researchers at those
other institutions.

Supplier Relationship
Management
New vendors not familiar with
doing business with a university
required a significant amount of
training on university practices, so
that service levels start out high and
remain so. Processes like proper



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018

Professional Development Notes
NAEP President Nichol Luoma
Research and Development RFP: Procurement Assists with Innovation
Training, Testing, and Incentives
Annual Meeting Wrap-Up
Certification: Which One Are You?
Evolution or Revolution? Campus Cards: Time for a New Business Model
Book Review: Building a Fund of Sustainability Knowledge, One Book at a Time—Part Nine
Best and Final: Procurement: How the Torch Gets Passed
Index to Advertisers
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - intro
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - cover1
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - cover2
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 3
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 4
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 5
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Professional Development Notes
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 7
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - NAEP President Nichol Luoma
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 9
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Research and Development RFP: Procurement Assists with Innovation
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 11
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 12
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 13
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 14
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 15
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Training, Testing, and Incentives
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 17
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Annual Meeting Wrap-Up
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 19
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Certification: Which One Are You?
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 21
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Evolution or Revolution? Campus Cards: Time for a New Business Model
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 23
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 24
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Book Review: Building a Fund of Sustainability Knowledge, One Book at a Time—Part Nine
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 26
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 27
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Best and Final: Procurement: How the Torch Gets Passed
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - 29
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - Index to Advertisers
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - cover3
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - cover4
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - outsert1
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - outsert2
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - outsert3
Educational Procurement Journal - Summer 2018 - outsert4
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/NEPQ/NEPQ0318
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/NEPQ/NEPQ0218
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/NEPQ/NEPQ0118
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/NEPQ/NEPQ0417
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/NEPQ/NEPQ0317
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