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eProcurement tools beat the efficiency challenge

Wednesday September 15th, 2010

Recently there has been a major push for the public sector to make increased efficiency savings while still maintaining best value on goods and services.

In the second of a five-part series, GO looks at how increased savings can be made by utilising the latest eProcurement tools.

With increased spending cuts of £6.2 billion, the public sector will need to find more efficient and streamlined procurement practices to ensure openness, transparency and equality, reducing costs for both buyers and suppliers in the process. eProcurement is a perfect example of how to facilitate these requirements.

The Operational Efficiency Programme has already identified that increased collaboration could partly be achieved by better use of existing investments in eProcurement systems.

A perfect example – eTendering

eTendering offers an opportunity to automate most of the tendering process, from preparing the tender specification, advertising and tender aggregation to supplier evaluation and placing of the contract.

Manual tender processes can be long and tiresome, often taking six months or more, which is costly for both buyer and supplier organisations. In the drive to increase efficiency as well as reduce the carbon footprint generated by traditional paper-based systems, eTendering can:

  • reduce timescales
  • increase auditability and probity
  • replace the need to print, photocopy, collate and post tender documents in order for suppliers to participate in public sector tenders

eMechanisms you can utilise

Further savings can be enjoyed by using purchasing cards for low-cost, high-frequency spends. This can reduce the overall purchase-per-invoice cost while ensuring prompt payment for suppliers.

Hosted systems present the buyer with a future-proofed solution that can be enhanced as new functionality is added to core tools within the package, with options for modularity within the system too.

eTendering in action

A good example of a hosted eTendering solution is BiP Solutions’ Delta suite of electronic tendering solutions. Delta-ets ensures the public body using the system can adapt it to deliver a user-friendly and compliant eTendering toolkit.

 Delta-ets covers the entire eTendering process, from contract announcement to supplier accreditation, document exchange, tender evaluation and contract award. The system ensures that public sector bodies are fully compliant with the EU Directives and UK Regulations through its independent audit trail, and allows organisations to reduce the time and costs associated with tendering.

What do you think?

So, join the conversation – click the Comment button and let us know if you believe that using eProcurement tools will help you and your organisation beat the latest spending crunch, or if you think there are other ways of maximising savings.

Coming soon, part three… the benefits of outsourcing

If you would like to read more about various eProcurement models, GO has a special section on eProcurement in the June 2010 edition, available on our website.

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