Nonprofit Procurement fuels its performance by...
- Stimulating change while staying socially minded
Changing the way things are done within an organization can feel scary - especially if the proposed change involves spending on products and services that the organization is unfamiliar with. Procurement Pros have the ability to educate decision makers within the organization by presenting alternative approaches for how the change could be implemented. Often this is done by evaluating vendors on how suited they are to facilitate the desired change, provide training so the organization successfully adopts the change and empower the client to develop expertise. Critically, this evaluation will be tailored to the social mission of the non-profit organization. Therefore, the Procurement Pro will consider how well prospective vendors align with the client’s mission and rule out inappropriate options.
For example, a non-profit organization may see value in leveraging automation to offer a 24-7 helpline through social media. The organization expects this to reduce the need to recruit late night volunteers while simultaneously improving the helpline’s response time and quality. However, that same organization may be concerned with the impact of automation on broader unemployment trends. A Procurement Pro can help that organization systematically evaluate prospective vendors’ ability and willingness to train staff and other community stakeholders in a way that improves their employability as well as negotiate the nitty gritty details of that agreement.
- Prioritizing Social Outcomes Above Financial Outcomes
Trying to keep the lights on while helping others feels easier much easier and more rewarding when contributors can clearly see the positive results of the effort they’ve been putting in.The goal here is to find a vendor partner that will line-up neatly with the client organization’s mission and values. The vendor must understand their client as much as the client must understand their vendor. The right partner will look at the potential long-term relationship and not just the immediate profit of selling a product or service.For example, there are times when negotiations hit a wall of sorts, when a vendor cannot provide any deeper discounts on pricing, or the services offered are limited to scope of the work being performed. In cases like this we can look at what a vendor can offer the client outside of the traditional services they may offer. In one case a vendor was prepared to donate their time by volunteering a full day’s work to the client. In other cases, we have negotiated a commission payed to the client based on total sales revenue.
- Giving decision makers confidence in their spending decisions
Whether you are looking at opening a new office, replacing old office furniture or engaging with an auditing company, it is vitally important to ensure that your choices will be the right ones and that any and all concerns about how much money is being spent are addressed. By incorporating a formal competitive selection process that includes a cross functional selection team, weighted selection criteria and a public posting of an RFP, you are limiting the risk involved and can gain confidence in your spend and make decisions that you won’t regret later. A formal competitive process begins with understanding the client’s need and translating that need into a RFP. Appointing a cross-functional selection team made up of individuals that will be directly impacted by the decision and establishing weighted selection criteria are imperative steps in the process to make sure the right choice is ultimately made. This is our core business at Round Table. We understand needs, help put a selection team together, develop selection criteria and manage communications with vendors, provide evaluation materials and compile the selection committee’s results. All in all, we are involved right up until the agreement is signed to make life easy for our clients.
We can help you maximize walue!
Investments made today should benefit your organization for years to come. This includes the investment of time spent evaluating and establishing procurement policies - they should be designed to last!Our approach identifies and implements changes and ensures that benefits have staying power beyond the life of a single cost-saving project.