Procurement plans can be prepared in many different formats. The important thing to remember is the content. The procurement plan should cover all the different steps in the process with the expected date of initiation of each milestone. When this is the case, the procurement plan merges with the procurement schedule. And, ideally, it should then contemplate all the steps in the process, including contract administration and close-out. But is this practical?
The procurement plan should begin at the beginning, and this beginning depends on the entity that has the control over the action. Ideally, the beginning should be with the preparation of the specifications (for goods and works) and terms of reference (for services). This is really the beginning of the process and should be calculated in such a manner that the completion of this stage can be determined.
The preparation of specifications and terms of reference is crucial and sometimes presents a bottleneck because only someone with experience can ideally estimate the time it will take to prepare the specifications or terms of reference of a particular requirement due to its complexity and uniqueness. This is important because if this period is not calculated correctly the whole plan can be thrown off. So we want to carefully calculate this period such that it encompasses the commencement and completion of the specifications and terms of reference.
Another period that is usually outside the control of the procurement entity is the bid/proposal evaluation period given that evaluation panel members can come from entities that are not under the control of the procurement entity. So the use of their time has to be negotiated. Thus, the evaluation period must be carefully calculated so as to ensure that the evaluation can actually take place within a set timeframe. The number of bids/proposals received also has an impact on the duration of the evaluation process.
Contract negotiations can also be a potential bottleneck, so sufficient time needs to be considered for this when it’s required.
We know that very seldom are plans carried out strictly according to what was foreseen. And procurement plans are no exception. This is primarily because when planning we are actually guessing how much time things will take based on past experience and, given that there are uncertainties, any missed milestones can result in delays in the plan cz-lekarna.com.
It’s important to keep delays in the execution of the procurement plan to a minimum, because such delays can have an impact on contract award and completion, which directly affects service delivery. That’s why the periodic update of procurement plans cannot be overstated.