- What do we need?
- How many?
- What quality?
- For stock or immediate use?
- If for stock, do we have sufficient storage space?
- Can we get the goods from another government entity?
- If not, can we make them?
- Who will make them?
- Do we buy them?
- Have we bought them before?
- Any known sources?
- What’s the cost?
- Are there funds available?
- Any funding constraints lien?
- Do we have the technical specifications?
- If not, who will prepare them?
- How long will it take to get the goods (procurement lead-time)?
The first step in the public procurement process is to identify requirements. All procurement requirements begin with the perception of a need. The need to cross a body of water could create a requirement to build a bridge, a ferry, or other transportation systems.
At this stage it is necessary to clearly define the need, and this may be done by way of a study to determine the best mode to cross the body of water (given the present situation and forecasted future need), then the type of bridge to be constructed, or a comparative cost/benefit analysis to determine the best solution between a bridge and other alternatives.
The study should include if the need can be satisfied in-house or contracted out, quantification of the initial budgetary estimate, and an idea of the procurement lead-time.
The conformation of the study team should be multidisciplinary in order to address the different questions to be answered to facilitate a comprehensive understanding of the need so as to clearly define the actual requirement.
The role of procurement practitioners at this stage is primarily to estimate the procurement lead time given the most appropriate procurement method that would be suitable for such a requirement.
Of course, the perceived need is not always as complex as in the example above. There are also needs for goods and services, and those should also undergo an analysis to clearly define requirements.
At the end of the requirements definition stage, a clear determination of the terms of reference, technical specifications or statement of work (depending on the procurement category) should be possible, including an estimate of the budget, and, most importantly, the procurement lead-time.
This requirement definition analysis is essential not only for new procurement requirements, and project initiation and concept development, but also for requirements needed for maintaining existing operations sverige-ed.com.
In most writings on public procurement the procurement process is considered to include contract administration. On the other hand, contract administration and contract management are treated as synonymous. To add to the confusion, sometimes the term contracting is also thrown in, such that as practitioners we are left with an enormous confusion on these terms.
To dispel some of the confusion, the public procurement process, as will be explained here, ends with contract award, and anything after contract award is considered contract administration. In future writings, the reason for this clear division will be explained in detail. This does not in anyway lessen the importance of contract administration. As a matter of fact, the purpose of making a clear distinction is to give more emphasis to the importance of contract administration, and also to clarify areas of responsibility.
We find additional confusion in other writings, even procurement manuals, were the procurement process is said to include inventory control and management, storage and distribution, and even disposal—all functions which are more appropriately classified as part of logistics, and even supply chain management, but not necessarily procurement.
So, in line with the above, the steps in the public procurement process are those listed below and they will be addressed in more detail in future posts:
1. Requirement identification
2. Determining procurement method
3. Procurement planning and strategy development
4 https://cheska-lekarna.com. Procurement requisition processing
5. Solicitation documents preparation and publication
6. Pre-bid/proposal meeting and site visit
7. Bid/proposal submission and opening
8. Bid/proposal evaluation
9. Contract award recommendation
10. Contract negotiations
11. Contract Award (signing)
After completing the above steps, those relevant to contract administration will also be addressed in detail.
As public procurement practitioners, we have the responsibility to manage the public procurement process within the public procurement legal framework and principles. Our personal preferences, and those of our family, friends and associates, should not interfere with or influence the decisions we make in the execution of our official duties.
Rather than define conflict of interest, it’s better to know how to identify it in its different manifestations.
Conflict of interest occurs when in the execution of our official duties as public procurement practitioners, we find ourselves in a position to be influenced or appear to be influenced by a private or personal interest we may have that could lead us to try to gain a personal advantage or to avoid a personal disadvantage.
Actual conflict of interest exists when, given our personal or private interests, we are in a position to be influenced. Potential conflict of interest exists when our personal or private interests puts us in a position where we could be influenced. Finally, perceived conflict of interest exists when our personal or private interest exposes us to being in a position where we could appear to be influenced in the execution of our duties. In all of these forms of conflict of interest the overriding factor is that our personal or private interest threatens to compromise our public duty as procurement practitioners.
Private or personal interests that could lead to actual, potential or perceived conflict of interest, may include professional and/or social activities and interest with individuals or groups, in addition to family and friends. Personal or private interests could also be monetary or non-monetary sverige-ed.com.
Conflict of interest is not necessarily wrong or unethical; what’s important is to indentify and manage it. As public procurement practitioners we have a responsibility to always serve the public interest in the performance of our duties. It is also our responsibility to identify any actual, potential or perceived instances of conflict of interest. It is particularly important to preclude conflict of interest of anyone involved in the evaluation, selection and contract monitoring processes. So, whenever we find ourselves in a situation of potential, perceived or actual conflict of interest, we must take the necessary action to disclose it by formally declaring ourselves disqualified from participation in a particular procurement process due to possible bias given our personal and/or financial interest.
For relevant resources on conflict of interest in the public sector, visit the links below: